Hwy. 97 reopens with short detour

An Argo crew places a guard rail for the Callan Road detour created after the rockslide on Hwy. 97 between Peachland and Summerland.

Hwy. 97 north of Summerland is now open — with a short detour using nearby Callan Road.

The 900-metre detour will accommodate both light vehicles and commercial vehicles, the provincial Transportation ministry is reporting. The speed limit along the detour route is 30 km/h. Drivers are reminded they should have good winter tires, obey the speed limit and drive with caution.

Meanwhile, the province says, extensive work and geotechnical assessments will continue on the slope above Hwy. 97 and ministry staff will continue to work as hard as possible to have the highway reopened to traffic as soon as it is safe to do so.

“While this detour is active, there will be occasional periodic stoppages to allow for blasting work,” a report from BC Transportation reads. “These stoppages will not occur between the hours of 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.”

Commercial vehicles that exceed 3.8 metres in width are only permitted on the detour between midnight and 5 a.m. Pedestrians and cyclists will not be permitted on the detour.

The work on the Callan Road detour route involved building a two-lane connection from Callan Road to Hwy. 97 on the south side of the slide and widening of the existing intersection on the north side, to allow for commercial vehicle use of this detour.

Argo Road Maintenance Inc. will monitor Callan Road, and will carry out snow plowing and sanding along the route as necessary to maintain the safest conditions possible.

The alternative routes previously provided by forest service roads are no longer necessary and maintenance of these routes will not continue.

Drivers should continue to check DriveBC.ca and @DriveBC on Twitter for the most up-to-date information.

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