Several highways closed in B.C., winter-weather warnings in effect

Drivers travelling in B.C. Wednesday may want to take note of several highway closures and winter weather warnings.

One person has died in a collision, and there are significant delays on the Coquihalla Highway in multiple locations Wednesday because of crashes.

The northbound lanes are closed between Highway 3 and  Highway 97C for 109 kilometres, from Hope to Merritt. Drivers are being warned to expect major delays, and consider taking Highway 3 instead.

Merritt RCMP said crews were called to a collision near Larsen Hill on Highway 5 for an accident likely caused by poor road conditions in the northbound lanes.

Then another northbound passenger vehicle ran into the back of a slower commercial vehicle trailer causing significant damage to the vehicle.

The driver in the northbound vehicle died on the side of the road, and three passengers were removed and taken to hospital for treatment.

There is also a crash southbound at Exit 250, 31 kilometres north of the Coquihalla summit. Emergency crews are blocking the road, and drivers should expect delays of around 30 minutes.

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On Vancouver Island, drivers should expect delays on Highway 4, at Toquart Bay Road, 20 kilometres east of the southern boundary of Pacific Rim National Park because of a washout.

Highway 1 was closed in both directions at Toll Road near Yale after a rock slide but it has since reopened.

Meantime, Environment and Climate Change Canada has posted several weather warnings for parts of B.C.

There are snowfall warnings for the Boundary, Kootenay Lake, and West Kootenay regions, while a winter storm warning has been posted for East Columbia, West Columbia, and the Shuswap regions.

Highway 3 from Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass could receive up to 20 centimetres of snow. The agency warns that there may be hazardous driving conditions in the mountains.

Highway 1 from Eagle Pass to Rogers Pass could see up to 40 centimetres of snow before the winter storm eases Wednesday evening.

The agency says rapidly accumulating snow will make travel difficult. Visibility may be suddenly reduced at times in heavy snow.


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