Information on how our Highways Department and maintenance contractors work to keep our roads safe during floods and freshet season, monitoring conditions, informing the public and repairing any damage.

12 Practical Steps to Repairing Flood Damage in the South Peace

Highway 29S at Zonnebeke Creek, south of the John Hart Highway, in June.

We’re working as hard as we can to repair roads in the South Peace region, after major flooding in mid-June 2016 damaged more than 300 sites. Restoring roads takes some or all of 12 steps.

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See the Road to Flood Recovery in South Peace

See the Road to Flood Recovery in South Peace

When severe flooding caused by heavy rains wiped out several sections of highway and side road in Northern BC, crews and heavy equipment were quick to respond. The Peace Region flooding began June 15, impacting 186 sites on six numbered highways (97 South, 2 at Dawson Creek, 29 South, 29 North, 52 North) and 40 side roads. There was serious devastation to infrastructure, homes and other personal property. But by noon on June 23, all six highways and 21...

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Tell TranBC


What Do You Want to Know More About? Are you looking for something on TranBC but can’t find it? Or have a question about what the ministry does and why we do it? Share your question with us and we’ll try to get you an answer. Who knows – your question could be our next blog! Thank you – we couldn’t do this without YOU.

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Emergency Signs on BC Highways and What they Mean

Road Flooded

We have an extensive inventory of signs in use along our highways – many of which you are familiar with. But let’s take a minute to highlight some of our emergency signs – signs which you might not see very often (or which you might notice, but not be familiar with the significance of), that could indicate a potential emergency situation for you while driving. For example, Road Flooded, Washout and Forest Fire signs let you know exactly what...

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Flood Management: Our Role in Keeping Floodwaters at Bay

BC Flood

Spring Flowers, or is it Showers? Well, depending on where you live, spring showers don’t bring flowers, they bring freshet (rapid snowpack melt and overwhelmed stream channels) and sometimes flooding. Since rising water can also impact the flow of traffic, we often have a role in flood management by managing and maintaining the provincial highway system. Whatever the water level, we have people on the job to get you where you need to go. The ministry activates flood plans,...

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Drive Smart: Find Higher Ground or Turn Around

Drive smart during a flood

It’s Emergency Preparedness Week (first full of May) and we asked our friends at Emergency Info BC to share some helpful tips with you about driving during a flood emergency. Here’s what they had to say: If you’re Flood Smart you also drive smart – or you don’t drive at all. During a flooding situation, road closures can take place across B.C. and driving your vehicle can become increasingly hazardous. DriveBC’s safety partner, Emergency Management BC, wants to remind...

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From Saturated to Solid – Peace Roads Repaired for Winter

Peace River Flood

January 9, 2012 It was an epic rainstorm and a marathon recovery…but things have firmed up nicely in the Peace. After massive rainfalls damaged more than 140 roads in the Peace Region this summer, the highway system is now about 85 per cent repaired, thanks to the dedicated work of hundreds of people including ministry staff, maintenance contractor personnel, consulting engineers and construction experts, local equipment operators and labour suppliers. People arrived from all over the Province to get...

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Fighting a Flood: Highway 20, One Year Later

Fighting a Flood - Highway 20, One Year Later

Just 12 months ago, Highway 20, between Tatla Lake and Bella Coola, was reopened after more than 200 millimetres of rain (a once in every 200 year event) fell over a 36-hour period, flooding the area. The route was impassable at 12 locations. Seventeen days later it was reopened. And, if you drove over it today, you’d see new blacktop coating the damaged sections, stream channels and crossings re-established and traffic signs, once half covered with water, standing tall...

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Resisting the Rising Waters – Flood Preparation and Response


In a recent post, we’ve talked about spring freshet. But what happens when water levels start to rise? As we mentioned in the previous article, the River Forecast Centre monitors snow levels throughout the winter and, as the weather warms, we generally have a good idea of how much potential there is for flooding in different parts of B.C. That knowledge helps crews determine the amount of sand, gravel and rock that may be needed to protect our transportation...

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What is a Freshet? Hint: It’s Not an Air Freshener


So, what is freshet? While it sounds like it could be a brand of scented cleaner or facial tissue, freshet is the snow melt that typically occurs from April to July, in B.C. Freshet can become a problem when winter snow packs melt rapidly, overwhelming stream channels and creating floods. Happily, freshet flooding can usually be forecast by monitoring snow packs and weather, and examining stream capacity data. In the event of a flood threat or actual flood, the...

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