Monday, July 22, 2024

Highway 4 to Tofino set to reopen this weekend after being closed for nearly a month

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After weeks of closure due to the nearby Cameron Bluffs fire, the highly anticipated reopening of Highway 4, the main route to Tofino on Vancouver Island’s west coast, is finally on the horizon.

In a tweet, BC Transportation has confirmed that the highway is scheduled to open to limited single-lane-alternating travel by this weekend, June 24th an 25th.

Crews have been working tirelessly to clear fallen trees and debris from the hillside above the affected stretch of highway.

Additionally, temporary safety measures, including a concrete barrier wall and protective mesh curtains suspended by cranes, are being installed to safeguard against falling rocks and trees while the slope recovers from the wildfire.

The closure of this seven-kilometre stretch of Highway 4 between Cathedral Grove and Koen Road since June 6th has severely impacted the tourism sector on the island’s west coast.

The highway as closed three days after the fire broke out after trees and rocks began tumbling down the slope.

During the closure, the BC Ministry of Transportation established a temporary gravel route detour, which allowed emergency travel and supplies to reach the coastal communities.

Although the detour added four hours to travel time, it provided a lifeline to ensure essential supplies continued to reach the affected areas.

Fire crews continue to tackle the 229-hectare Cameron Bluffs fire, now classified as under control.

As of Monday, BC Wildfire Service said they are patrolling areas and extinguishing hot spots when possible.

No date has been set on when the highway will full reopen.

Rockfall netting at Cameron Lake Bluffs, Hwy 4

Here's a drone view of protective rockfall netting being installed on Hwy 4, following the wildfire at Cameron Lake Bluffs.Three sections of mesh will be suspended by cranes to protect travellers. Roadside barrier has been placed alongside Cameron Lake for about 360 metres, and a concrete wall will be erected.The highway remains closed in the area, but is on track to reopen single-lane alternating traffic by June 24-25. Long queues are expected. This news release provides more information about air services and support for communities and tourism: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2023MOTI0086-000979The detour remains in place until this section of Hwy 4 is FULLY reopened to one lane of traffic each way. (No estimate on the date).If taking the detour is necessary to you, be aware that it adds about four hours of travel time. There is potentially slow-moving traffic, no passing, single lane bridges, sharp turns and gravel sections. There is no cell phone network coverage (except for a mobile cellular tower at the midpoint of the detour, which provides a reception range of about one kilometre), no food or fuel facilities, and limited toilets and emergency services. Be sure to fuel up and have water aboard. ⭐⭐ TURN YOUR HEADLIGHTS ON so your vehicle is visible from the front AND REAR, in dusty sections. ⚠️Daytime running lights DO NOT illuminate your vehicle's tail lights!⚠For a detour map, the commercial vehicle convoy schedule, and more information, visit: https://www.tranbc.ca/current-travel-advisories

Posted by BC Transportation and Infrastructure on Tuesday, June 20, 2023

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Victoria Buzz Staffhttps://www.victoriabuzz.com
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