British Columbia

Ringette teams stuck overnight on Coquihalla highway

Hundreds of drivers and travellers were trapped after multiple highways were shut down due to freezing rain — including an entire under-12 ringette team from Richmond.

Hundreds of travellers trapped after multiple highways shut down due to freezing rain

A Richmond ringette team was trapped overnight on a bus on the Coquihalla highway after the highway was shut down due to freezing rain. (Laura Takasaki)

Freezing rain and icy, treacherous conditions shut down every major highway leading in and out of B.C.'s Lower Mainland last night, trapping hundreds of drivers — including an entire ringette team from Richmond.

Laura Takasaki with Richmond Ringette spent the night on a bus with 48 people traveling to a girl's ringette tournament in Kelowna. She said the bus has been stuck since 5:30 p.m. PT last night.

The athletes range in age from under 12 to 19.

Laura Takasaki says the highway is like a sheet of ice. (Laura Takasaki)

"We watched a lot of movies — Grease and Mamma Mia," she said. "We made about 60 sandwiches last night, and they're all gone."

Takasaki said they were lucky because it was warm — with the bus running all night long with plenty of gas in the tank — and there was food and a bathroom on board.

She described the road conditions as "a sheet of ice."

"We were joking that we could put our skates on and skate the mountain," she said.

Drive BC says it expects the highway will open no later than 2 p.m. PT.

With files from Farrah Merali