Highway 4 east of Port Alberni is closed in both directions due to overnight rainfall, but the province’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure says that it is expected to re-open this afternoon (Aug. 9).
The ministry announced on the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 9 that rainfall overnight required a portion of Highway 4 to be closed for safety. The highway has been closed off and on since June due to a wildfire along Cameron Bluffs.
According to the ministry, safe work procedures require that if at least 10-mm of rain falls over a 12-hour period, the road must be closed, rock mesh blankets lowered and crews evacuated from the site for a minimum 24-hour period, as the risk of falling debris increases.
“The Cameron Lake bluffs wildfire caused damage to the bluff, and rainfall has increased the risk of debris fall along the highway,” the ministry warned. “This requires that all work be suspended and the highway be closed for observation.”
Originally, the highway was scheduled to be closed until “at least” midnight on Aug. 10, but the ministry and its contractors determined that a 5 p.m. re-opening on Aug. 9 would be possible after site monitoring. Traffic will be single-lane alternating.
“Geotechnical engineers have confirmed the stability of the slope and the reduction in the amount of precipitation experienced since the closure,” the ministry explained.
Visit www.drivebc.ca for the most up-to-date information about the road.
A detour route to Lake Cowichan via Bamfield Main is open. Check the ministry’s website for information about the detour route.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates…