The Trans Canada Highway has reopened after an early morning truck crash closed the busy thoroughfare in both directions for most of the day Monday.
A transport truck fuelled by liquified natural gas smashed through the cement guard rail at Bridal Falls. As the cab lay twisted on its side, the LNG fuel began to vent from the vehicle.
Popkum firefighters quickly cordoned off the area, keeping vehicles back 300 metres from the scene.
The highway was closed in both directions as the hazardous materials team was brought in to assess the situation. RCMP, BC Ministry of the Environment, and FortisBC were also called in.
Witnesses said the driver of the truck and a passenger were able to walk away from the crash.
The highway closure caused huge delays as vehicles were rerouted around the site. Eastbound traffic, which was directed to Highway 9 and 7, was backed 15 kilometres to the Prest Road overpass.
Westbound lanes were opened by 2:30 p.m.
Eastbound lanes, however, remained closed until 3:50 pm. It wasn’t until the LNG fuel was vented from the truck in a controlled release that truck could be moved safely.
Homes and businesses in a 650-metre radius were evacuated during the process as a precaution, although a spokesperson with the Fraser Valley Regional District said the risk was minimal.