Shift into Winter

An initiative to keep you safe and moving during the winter season, and the work we do to make sure you are.

Is Your Impatience a Safety Concern on the Coq?

R-022-2Ta-xx

There’s an essential rule about sharing the road with snowplows: NEVER pass them on the right. This winter, there have been 11 collisions between cars and snowplows, on one BC highway alone. That’s a lot of crashes and a lot of stress, grief and costs for a lot of people! Check out this video, featuring VSA Highway Maintenance, our contractor responsible for the Coquihalla Highway. The reason why you don’t want to pass an operating plow on the right,...

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The Coquihalla Snowshed Protocol: 10 Steps to Highway Safety

plows

BC Highway 5 from Hope to Merritt (also known as the Coquihalla or “the Coq”) is a busy transportation corridor through a high mountain pass, and because of this high elevation, the Coquihalla can experience periods of heavy snowfall. Don’t let that worry you though – VSA Highway Maintenance, our maintenance contractor for the route, has a plan. It’s called “the Coquihalla Snowshed Protocol” and it’s every bit as important as it sounds. What exactly is the protocol and...

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15 Seconds to Safety: Clearing Snow Off Your Vehicle

Clearing Snow Off Vehicle

When we asked you about your winter driving pet peeves, one of the most common responses was drivers who don’t clear their entire vehicle of snow. We’ve all seen those rolling snowballs with only the front (and maybe the rear) windows having been touched by a snow brush. There are a couple reasons why drivers who don’t clear their vehicles peeve people off. With no line of sight out the side windows or mirrors, the guilty driver has an...

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Holiday Songs of Highway Safety

Christmas Cheer

The holiday season: a tradition of giving, family gatherings, caroling… oh so much singing (even if there isn’t a lot of “in tune.”) But, who cares?!? ‘Tis the season! So we thought it would be a great occasion to share the TranBC version of some of those tunes, for you to enjoy regardless of your singing abilities (and not a bad way to remind folks about some of their travel information resources). Happy Holidays!

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Black Ice: What It Is and How to Handle It

winter conditions

Picture this. You’re driving your car on a northern highway in British Columbia. It’s just before 8 am on a frosty February morning. While the road appears bare, you do notice snow along the side of the highway as you drive. Should be clear sailing – right? Don’t be so sure. This is exactly when you should be on the lookout for black ice, so don’t let your winter driving guard down just yet. Even though our maintenance contractors...

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15 Seconds to Safety: Are Your Tail Lights On?

Are your tail lights on?

One of the most common mistakes drivers are making these dark, wintry days is failing to activate their tail lights. If you’re ever trailing one of these phantom cars, either during a cloudy day or even at night, chances are there are one or more misconceptions at play. Misconceptions: Tail lights are like daytime running lights: they are always on. Not true. They turn on with the headlights. A lit up dashboard means all lights are on. Not always...

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Know When to Slow for Weather With Variable Speed Signs

Variable speed limit sign in winter

We’re big fans of the maxim: “drive to conditions.” Highway travellers improve their safety dramatically by following those three words, especially in winter. Our highway engineers set speed limits based on IDEAL driving conditions – think bare, dry roads and warm, clear weather. Once factors mess with these conditions – be it fog, rain, snow… whatever – drivers should adjust by slowing to a sensible speed. Now, you may have noticed crews installing new signs on sections of the...

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A Winter Reminder: Don’t Pass Snow Plows with Flashing Lights

YELLOW FLASHING LIGHTS on a plow truck means it's plowing or sanding-3

It’s early in the winter driving season, and we’re all getting used to the white stuff again, but we’ve had a couple incidents lately where travellers have tried to pass snow plows on the right hand side while the plows are actively working. Don’t do this. Not only is passing an active plow dangerous for you, it’s dangerous for the plow operators and drivers around you. Be patient. Snow plow operators will pull over and let you pass as...

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How to Pack Your Vehicle Emergency Kit in 15 Seconds

Fifteen Seconds Emerg Kit

We all wish we had ultra-handy skills like MacGyver, right? Right. But let’s face it – we don’t. We cannot fashion a flashlight out of a pop bottle. Nor can we craft winter gloves out of the fluff between the seats. It’s just not going to happen. But an emergency on the road might happen, and you don’t want to be stuck in the cold wishing you had packed a winter emergency kit. It doesn’t take much effort. In...

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How to Measure Tire Tread Depth in 15 Seconds

How to Measure Tire Tread Depth in 15 Seconds

We want to show you how to measure your tires’ tread depth. It’s painless, quick and easy – heck, we were even able to fit it all in this 15-second video. Winter tires are important, but only if you have enough tread. Legally, you cannot have less than 3.5 mm (approximately 5/32 of an inch) on most highways in British Columbia between October 1 and March 31. If you barely have the legal minimum depth of tread, you should...

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