6 Paths to Peace and Winter Safety on the Alaska Highway

March 9, 2015
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Pass only when you are 100% sure it’s safe. This isn’t the best time. If you live or drive in the Peace region, you know that extra care and attention are needed in winter, when driving from Mile 54 (13 kilometres north of Fort St. John) to Mile 83 of the Alaska Highway. This section, considered a part of Highway 97, is a busy Peace Country route. Carrying local folks and truck traffic from the region’s busy oil and...

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4 Types of Transportation Engineers

March 3, 2015
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March is National Engineering Month, a celebration of all Canadians who invent, design, build, maintain and improve. What better time to reflect on our own Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure engineers? There are approximately 230 staff members in our Engineering Branch, representing four areas of expertise. Each type of engineer is vital for building and maintaining highways that are safe, reliable and have a minimal impact on the beautiful environments they run through. So, without further ado, here is...

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Can You Guess the BC Highway Mountain Pass Word Scramble?

February 24, 2015
Can You Guess the BC Highway Mountain Pass Word Scramble?

Mountain passes have always posed special challenges for engineers and travellers – ever since we started blazing foot trails, carving out wagon roads, and ultimately laying down highways. But while steep grades and fast-changing weather conditions demand extra caution, mountain passes give us access to some of the most beautiful scenery in the province. There are more than 50 mountain passes in BC, many of them natural landmarks from our favourite road trips. We thought it would be fun...

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Behind the Scenes: Hanging From a Rock Face for Avalanche Safety

February 16, 2015
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The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure Avalanche and Weather Program is changing the landscape of avalanche control in Canada. Dropping explosives from a helicopter has traditionally been our weapon of choice for triggering controlled avalanches. But some challenging terrain on Yellowhead Highway 16, between Terrace and Prince Rupert, has compelled our avalanche team to try harnessing snow and ice rather than letting it loose. In fall 2014, crews completed Canada’s second ever avalanche fencing installation at the 35 Mile...

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BC RoadTrip Time Machine: The Malahat, circa 1966

February 10, 2015
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A while back, we posted an invitation to Drive a BC Highway in 15,000 Photos. It was a fast-paced tour of the Coquihalla Highway from 2008 and an introduction to our Photolog program. That post received some positive reactions, so we thought we’d dig a little deeper and go a whole lot farther back in time. It meant combing through off-site archives and resurrecting some old-school tech, so we could watch and record reels of 16 mm film. And...

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What NOT to wear on the Coquihalla

February 4, 2015
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It may be the 21st century, where almost anything goes as far as fashion is concerned…but don’t tell that to the Coquihalla. As far as this mountain pass is concerned, if you don’t show up for class in proper winter attire, you can prepare to get schooled. You see, mountain passes in B.C. subscribe to the “be prepared” school of fashion and they like to see their guests arrive properly dressed, to say the least. If not, you will...

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How to Drive Around Snow Plows in BC

January 27, 2015
BC Snow Plow

Pop quiz! You’re driving a two-lane highway after a fresh dumping of snow. You spot the flashing lights of a snow plow up ahead in the left lane. You… a) Speed up to get ready to pass in the right lane; b) Maintain speed until you settle in close behind the plow; c) Flash your high beams until the plow truck pulls over to let you pass; d) Keep your distance until the plow truck pulls over to allow...

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