Crawling, chaotic commute as snow, ice hit Lower Mainland
Posted January 12, 2024 7:21 am.
Last Updated January 12, 2024 9:41 am.
Depending on where you needed to get Thursday, your commute may have been a tangled mess of cars and buses struggling with the snow and ice.
A lot of areas, from New Westminster, Burnaby, Coquitlam, Richmond, Surrey, and Vancouver saw bumper-to-bumper gridlock, cars sliding down hills and transit buses getting stuck.
Friday’s morning commute remains icy as the region isn’t expected to warm up until after the weekend. Some cars remain in ditches or propped up on medians during, waiting patiently to be recovered.
“The stretch of Marine Way around Market Crossing is pure ice and completely impassable,” one caller told CityNews.
“I have winter tires, but my car is going left and right. There are a lot of cars on Marine Drive coming downhill from Boundary [Road], it’s like driving on soap. Driving around Burnaby, even with 4×4, it’s really, really hard to get around, especially uphills,” said another.
“Tell everyone who does not have good winter tires to not try to take the McGill on-ramp onto the bridge, people are sliding out, even me. I have snow tires and I’m spinning,” explained one woman, whose caution was echoed by the Vancouver Police Department.
There was also mayhem around the Queensborough Bridge.
“Trying to get across the Queensborough Bridge, going onto Southwest Marine Drive and it’s taken me an hour-and-a-half and I haven’t crossed the bridge yet,” said one frustrated commuter.
“I’m a plow truck operator in Queensborough and it’s completely gridlocked trying to get on the Queensborough towards New Westminster and Burnaby, it doesn’t matter what street, side streets are completely gridlocked. All the drivers are cutting me off, cutting in front, and not letting us plows get through to help fix the problem,” said another caller.
TransLink is warning people to bundle up if they’re heading out because you may be waiting longer than usual to catch your ride.
As of Friday morning, some BC Hydro customers were without power, mainly in Abbotsford, as temperatures dipped even deeper in the Fraser Valley.
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–With files from Kevin Olenick