Posts Tagged ‘ shiftintowinter ’

Watch How We Get Through Winter on the Coquihalla

The Coquihalla (BC Highway 5 from Hope to Merritt) is the province’s busiest mountain pass. At more than 1,200 metres in elevation, it’s also one of the routes hit hardest by heavy snowfall and other winter conditions. Fear not… we have a plan, and a team of professionals to execute what we call: The Coquihalla Snowshed Protocol. When the snow flies, the team carries out a series of steps to make sure you safely make it up and over...

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The Coquihalla Snowshed Protocol: 10 Steps to Highway Safety

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

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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15 Seconds to Safety: 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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A Winter Reminder: Don’t Pass Snow Plows with Flashing Lights

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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Winter: the Good, the Bad, and the Driving Safely

  There are several good things about winter… Hockey Toques Hot chocolate Tobogganing The scent of wood smoke But there are also several bad things about winter, and some of them have to do with driving. Black ice Dead batteries Reduced visibility Sudden weather changes Slush… cold, nasty slush… and the list goes on Whether it’s driving for work or shuttling the kids to early morning hockey practice, knowledge is power when it comes to reducing your risk of...

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Unleashing the Snowcats: Clearing the Terrace-Kitimat Blizzard

How do you clear the roads when the amount of snowfall over 36 hours amounts to the height of the average Canadian adult? You get creative, and look to the ski hills. When 168 cm (5’6”) of snow fell in the Terrace-Kitimat area between February 5 and 7 (4pm-4am, 2015), local maintenance contractor Nechako Northcoast brought in heavy equipment from outside, such as graders, loaders, and three snowcats. Typically used on ski hills, these cool cats are designed to...

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What NOT to wear on the Coquihalla

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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Winter Driving: How Not to Need a Tow Truck

winter driving

A roadside expert generously shared his knowledge with us recently, to help drivers #ShiftintoWinter, and keep everyone safer on B.C.’s roads. Larry Styba rescues vehicles as part of his job as a tow truck operator, trainer and public relations person with Maple Ridge Towing. A WreckMaster Level 6/7 certified towing and recovery operator, Larry sees and hears how people end up in mishaps that require his help. He also knows what’s needed to drive large vehicles in winter’s most...

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Driving Divided Freeways in BC: 7 Tips You Need to Know

There are many kinds of highways in BC: Rural highways, urban highways, primary highways, secondary highways, freeways and expressways just to name a few. Each type of highway serves a different purpose. For example, a freeway is a divided primary highway built for through traffic (as opposed to local traffic access) with two or more lanes in each direction of travel. These lanes are accessible via interchanges only. A good example of a freeway is BC Highway 5, also...

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