Rock slide closes Highway 3

Highway 3 is closed indefinitely between Keremeos and Hedley after a rockslide covered four lanes of the road with debris

  • Jan. 27, 2014 6:00 a.m.

Argo Maintenance workers check out damage caused by Monday afternoon's rock slide on Highway 3 approximately 18 kilometres west of Keremeos.



Highway 3 was closed indefinitely after a rockslide covered four lanes of the road with debris around noon Monday, January 27.

Police, Argo Road Maintenance, Fortis and Telus officials attended the scene, located about one kilometre west of the Crossings youth addiction treatment facility, nine kilometres west of Keremeos.

Boulders the size of pickup trucks presently cover four lanes of Highway 3. Several large boulders also crossed the highway into the river, damaging high voltage power lines on both sides of the highway.

RCMP on scene said the highway will remain closed until a geotechnical inspection of the mountain slope above the road is completed.

Falling rock continued to raise dust plumes several thousand feet above the highway, as rock movement continues to make the are extremely dangerous.

Two of three vehicles caught in the slide remain on scene, as police cordon off several hundred metres of roadway on either side of the slide, which is itself approximately 150 metres wide.

One woman is reported to have been taken to hospital with non life threatening injuries after driving her car through the slide as it was coming down.

Police request the motoring public  to use an alternate route.   For all updates please visit the Drive BC website at www.drivebc.com

Several Upper Similkameen residents working in Keremeos  – as well as Lower Similkameen residents working in Princeton – said they would detour up Nickle Plate Road to Apex and Green Mountain Road in order to return to their homes while the road remains closed.

A rockfall on June 24, 2013, which occurred about two kilometres east of Monday’s slide, brought down power lines and caused a grass fire, in addition to littering the highway with boulders.

Weather in the SImilkameen on Monday saw temperatures around the freezing mark, with low cloud and light winds.

Residents of the Similkameen were also without power for up to an hour Monday, afternoon after the  slide damaged power lines between Hedley and Keremeos.

Student seating had to be hastily rearranged at Similkameen Elementary Secondary School after the senior gym was plunged into darkness on the first day of exam week.

Principal Kate Turner said students were moved into classrooms to complete their exams before power was restored about 20 minutes later.

Downtown businesses in Keremeos had to temporarily close their doors, without access to debit or credit card services. The power outage was apparently  widespread, as reports of power out was received from as far west as Princeton, north to Apex and east to Oliver.

 

Just Posted

$21.5 million medical pot plant for Princeton

A $21.5 million medical marijuana facility - expected to provide 95 jobs… Continue reading

Seasonal cabins threatened by Cool Creek blaze

Fire burning out of control southeast of Princeton

BC Wildfire has close eyes on Snowy Mountain wildfire

BC Wildfire has a variety of plans depending how the wildfire near Keremeos changes in coming days

Fire burning near Olalla still out of control

BC Wildfire crews are responding to a 144 hectare blaze near Keremeos

Sparks set to fly in new Okanagan College welding facility

Welding students based in Penticton will now have access to the new, $2.2 million facility

More smoggy air for the Okanagan

Breathing conditions are improving, though still not ideal

Evacuation alert for Dark Lake Valley area

There are 21 properties are affected

B.C. team stays alive in Little League World Series after another nail-biter

Surrey-based squad scored a 6-4 win over Mexico reps in Williamsport on Monday

Kids, seniors at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

B.C. Centre for Disease Control says children’s lungs don’t fully develop until about age 10

B.C. mother charged in 7-year-old daughter’s death appears in court

The 36-year-old mother, of Langley’s Aaliyah Rosa, has been charged with second-degree murder

Thieves target tires and rims in Shuswap

Salmon Arm RCMP report two recent incidents, a van used in one theft was stolen in Surrey

VIDEO: Teen soccer phenomenon Alphonso Davies to visit B.C. kids camp

The 17-year-old Vancouver Whitecap player is one of the youngest players in MLS history

25-year-old Edmonton man pronounced dead on Shuswap Lake houseboat

Sicamous RCMP deem death to be non suspicious, BC Coroners Service investigating

Nearly 7 million late-run sockeye due to return to Shuswap

Officials hope promising Scotch Creek early-return bodes well for Adams River run

Most Read