It will be at least later this spring before the Ministry of Transportation and Highways will be able to say what the plan is for the washed out West Fraser Road in the North Cariboo.
Here, Brad Moores, the Operations Manager in Quesnel, talks about some of the work that has been done…
“We have done a lot of geotechnical work, and that work was to go through the area and walk the options to get a preliminary assessment of the ground conditions. So the teams met and reviewed all of those options. We’ve looked at what would be possible down low along the existing valley, and up high going over top of the hill.”
Moores says the next steps over the next few months include completing the geotechnical assessment to determine what the best road alignment will be, and to continue to try to secure disaster funding from the Federal Government to pay for what will be a very costly project…
“That’s why we’re doing the geotechnical drilling and assessment to further refine those costs, because it would be premature to say what it’s going to cost until you understand your soil conditions, that is greatly going to increase the costs.”
He says they are very aware of the hardship that this has put on people in the area, but Moores says it is a very complex issue that takes time to figure out…
“We’re dealing with approximately nine slide complexes ranging from 12 thousand cubic meters to 18 million cubic meters in size. This is the most complicated event that I’ve worked with.”
Moores says they plan to meet with residents impacted by this incident once they have something concrete to tell them.
He assures them that everybody is working hard on defining the options to re-establish regular service.
Moores says in the meantime, they are also looking at doing some more work on the detour route that is in place.