BC Transit buses slowly resume service in Victoria following snow day

BC Transit buses slowly resume service in Victoria following snow day
Photo credit: Nicholas Pescod

Bus passengers in Greater Victoria are seeing limited service resumption Wednesday, primarily downtown, after experiencing a full-day suspension due to snow, according to BC Transit.

After evaluating road conditions Wednesday morning the company says it’s resuming limited service on several routes, Downtown/UVic, Royal Jubilee/James Bay and the bus routes that connect downtown Victoria to Langford and the Swartz Bay ferry terminal.

Here’s a full list of bus routes running in some capacity in Greater Victoria as of 1 p.m. Wednesday:

  • 2 South Oak Bay/James Bay
  • 3 Royal Jubilee/James Bay – Not servicing May, routing via Fairfield in both directions.
  • 4 Downtown/UVic – Will finish/leave from Government and Superior.
  • 6 Downtown/Royal Oak – Not servicing Chatterton & Emily Carr, routing Royal Oak Mall.
  • 7 Downtown/Uvic
  • 10 Royal Jubilee/James Bay
  • 11 Tillicum/UVic – Not servicing Uplands, routing via Cadboro Bay in both directions.
  • 14 UVic/Vic General
  • 15 Esquimalt/UVic
  • 21 Downtown/Interurban – Not servicing Viaduct/Markham Tech Park, instead using Camosun College Loop.
  • 25 Maplewood/Tillicum
  • 26 Dockyard/UVic
  • 27/28 Majestic/Gordon Head – Not servicing Ferndale/Tyndall/Blanshard Terminus, routing from Shelbourne to McKenzie, trip ending at UVic.
  • 31 Royal Oak/Downtown – Servicing Carey, routing right on Saanich, left on Vernon to Carey.
  • 39 Interurban/UVic
  • 50 Downtown/Langford
  • 52 Bear Mountain/Colwood – Not servicing Bear Mountain/Stornoway/Lagoon/Latoria, routing via Millstream roundabout & Carindale in both directions.
  • 61 Downtown/Sooke
  • 70 Downtown/Swartz Bay
  • 72 Downtown/Swartz Bay
  • 75 Saanichton/Downtown – Not servicing Tanner Ridge, routing via Keating Cross Roads.
  • 81 Brentwood Bay/Swartz Bay
  • 83 Sidney/Royal Oak – Not servicing Beaver/Quail, routing via West Saanich, to Interurban.

“It’s important to note these routes are not operating on schedule, and we will be gradually increasing frequency,” said Tessa Humphries, BC Transit’s communications manager, in an updated service notice.

“Our team is working hard to get you to your destination and we ask you to please leave more time for your journey. BC Transit appreciates your patience during this time.”

On Tuesday, local bus service was scrapped after a massive amount of overnight snowfall, 30 centimetres and higher in some areas, led to dangerous driving conditions with both the B.C. government and police asking people to stay home.

“We did dispatch about 10 buses in the early afternoon to test the road conditions but, due to conditions, made the decision to suspend service for the remainder of the day,” explained Humphries.

By Tuesday night, in the midst of issuing an arctic outflow warning for the area, Environment Canada predicted temperatures in Victoria could drop to minus 18 degrees Celsius overnight with the wind chill.

Essential service only for HandyDART

BC Transit says it’s deploying some buses on routes downtown and at major thoroughfares to test road conditions Wednesday, as the HandyDART service offers essential service only for medical appointments, similar to Tuesday.

“Our operators there are going above and beyond to ensure customers are able to get out of their driveways too. Drivers have shovels and will try to get as close as they can,” added Humphries.

In the Cowichan Valley Regional Transit System, meanwhile, service is back with drivers operating on adverse weather routing, which is found on BC Transit’s website and listed in the Riders’ Guide.

BC Transit says it’s closely monitoring conditions in Greater Victoria and, for the most up-to-date information, encourages customers to visit its website, NextRide or the Transit app.

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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