Highway alert

Drivers warn of ‘hurricane’ and ‘gale force’ winds on Coquihalla Highway

Environment Canada warns of 10 cm of snowfall and 60km/hr winds gusting to 90

Drivers are warning of ‘hurricane’ and ‘gale force’ winds on the Coquihalla Highway between Hope and Merritt, as weather alerts warn of strong winds through the Fraser Canyon and Fraser Valley.

A special weather statement is in place for the Coquihalla Highway (Highway 5) from Hope to Merritt, warning that rain is expected to switch to snow with another 10 centimetres expected to fall near the summit this evening (Tuesday, Oct. 13). On top of this, the Fraser Canyon and Fraser Valley will see strong winds with potential to cause damage.

Southerly winds of 60 kilometres per hour gusting to 90 will be hitting the region this afternoon. Winds are expected to ease in the evening. Drivers posting on social media warned of ‘gale force winds blowing leaves’ and ‘hurricane winds and blowing debris and hail’ on the highway between Hope and Merritt. One driver even stated that their truck’s side was lifted a few times by the wind.

“High winds may toss loose objects or cause tree branches to break,” Environment Canada warned. “Avoid wooded areas to prevent injury from falling trees or branches. Campers should move to sturdy shelters.”

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