Road washed out east of Kitwanga

Traffic at the location reduced to single lane alternating

  • Apr. 27, 2012 8:00 p.m.

ENGINEERS ARE working on a plan to rebuild a section of Hwy16 east of Kitwanga which washed away last week.

In the meantime there’s single-lane alternating traffic controlled by flaggers at the spot between Kitwanga and Gitsegukla in an area called the Andimaul.

We’ll be at single lane traffic for the indefinite future,” said Smithers transportation ministry official Cam Schley of the situation.

He said material had been sliding down from the highway roadbed into the Skeena River for several weeks before much larger amounts of material gave way last week, taking the westbound lane with it.

We’ve had our geo-technical engineers assessing the location. They’ve determined it’s safe as far as traffic goes,” Schley added.

But before reconstruction can begin, crews will need to do a bit more work to clean up the area in which they will be working, he said.

Schley said the work plan will probably involve building up the area with larger material leading up to the roadbed level.

The ministry had been rebuilding portions of the highway in the area of the slide but had not been doing any work at the slide location itself.

We’ve been dealing with a whole bunch of geotechnical issues in that area,” noted Schley.