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Violin shopping doesn’t qualify as essential travel on Highway 3: MOTI

Ministry manager says most travellers get through, and urges people to be responsible

Violin shopping is not a good enough reason to travel Highway 3, according to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI).

As the main corridor between the Lower Mainland and B.C.’s Interior remains open only for essential traffic, most drivers seem to be following the rules, according to Erik Lachmuth, MOTI district manager.

However recently one traveller was turned back on the highway after admitting the trip was to view a violin, in person, which was under consideration for purchase.

“Barring incredibly obvious things like that…people are generally able to get through (if they) are being thoughtful,” he said.

“The big thing is just really taking that time to ask yourself whether the travel you need to take here is essential…Very few people get turned back.”

The province has announced essential travel restrictions on Highway 3 between Hope and Princeton will continue throughout the holiday season. It is urging people who want to travel for non-essential reasons to explore other options, such as bus and air travel.

Under provincial order non-essential travel includes:

• Going to school

•Going to work (does not apply to essential personnel or work related to an essential trip)

• Vacations, weekend getaways and tourism

• Visiting family or friends for social reasons

• Casual shopping and other outings

• Recreation activities

• Hunting, unless you are an Indigenous person exercising your Aboriginal or treaty rights

Under provincial order essential travel includes:

• Transporting essential goods and supplies

• Responding to emergencies including search and rescue operations

• Medical reasons and urgent medial treatment

• Returning to your principal residence (home)

• Assisting vulnerable or at-risk people

• Picking up a person who resides at your place of residence and is returning home

• Returning a child to their principal residence (includes families with shared custody)

• Moving your principal residence

• Going to work as essential personnel

Related: Province puts new resources into road maintenance and driver enforcement in Princeton area

Related: Windy weather warning: Gusts of up to 80 km/h predicted to hit Okanagan, Shuswap

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Andrea DeMeer

About the Author: Andrea DeMeer

Andrea is the publisher of the Similkameen Spotlight.
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