A rock slide 3 km east of Christina Lake on Feb. 16 sent debris falling to Highway 3 halting traffic in both direction and knocking the power out. The slide occurred at 7 a.m. and Emcon crews were on scene quickly removing debris. Traffic was opened to single lane at around 8:30 a.m. Power was restored by FortisBC by the afternoon.
Rick Wright, operations manager for Emcon, said that the crews are busy removing all the debris to allow traffic through.
“Some trees came down with the debris and closed both lanes for about an hour,” said Wright. “We hope to be full opening with both lanes by 4 p.m. today (Feb. 17) but we may need to go back in tomorrow. We probably won’t remove all the rock today but we’re hoping to do a full opening during the night (starting at 4 p.m.) and close it back to single lane alternating tomorrow morning so we can remove the rest of the debris.”
Wright said it’s not uncommon to have rock slides at this time of year with frozen soil thawing. “We had a geo tech from the Ministry of Transportation on site yesterday. It’s not just common to our area it’s throughout the province,” he said. “Water gets into the rocks and freezes over time than thaws creating little void. The rock loses some of it’s strength and that causes the slides.”