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Meeting planned to discuss public safety and wildlife protection

A meeting will take place next week to discuss measures to improve public safety and wildlife protection, following heavy snowfall and road closures along Highways 93 and 95.

Representatives from local government, the RDEK, Parks Canada, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement, and RCMP will attend the meeting.

The meeting was called by Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Doug Clovechok and RDEK Area G Director Gerry Wilkie following a number of concerned calls from the public.

“The closures of the Trans-Canada Highway and the rerouting of that traffic came through Highway 93/95, which had a big impact on the constituents in my riding,” said Clovechok. “We want to sit down and have a conversation about what went really well and what we can work on for the next closure to try to mitigate some of the issues that came about.”

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The closure resulted in a number of issues, particularly when the region was hit with a severe winter storm.

“Highway 93/95 was never built for that kind of traffic, it’s not the Trans-Canada Highway,” said Clovechok. “The closure of the park, that probably should have happed before people got stranded there for 12 hours, that was a big issue. We want to see what we can do to improve that situation during a heavy storm”

Vehicle collisions, both between vehicles and with wildlife were also brought up as a major concern.

“We lost 13 bears in the stretch of about two weeks, and of course elk and deer wew a big issue. Speeding and traffic also created problems through the RCMP,” said Clovechok. “People were also having trouble getting out of their homes and driveways, getting into that traffic. School busses were also having issues with the increase in traffic.”

The meeting is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, Feb. 1st.

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