Highway 4 at Cameron Bluffs to see two full daytime closures starting Thursday

Highway 4 at Cameron Bluffs to see two full daytime closures starting Thursday
Traffic is seen on Highway 4 on Aug. 3, 2023.

Highway 4 at Cameron Lake will see full daytime closures on two consecutive Thursdays as crews remove hazardous boulders, according to the B.C. government.

The two full daytime closures start Thursday, Aug. 17, “to allow crews to remove approximately a dozen refrigerator-sized boulders as part of the rock-scaling work…” says B.C.’s Ministry and Transporation and Infrastructure.

In a news release Monday, the ministry says the work is “being done at Angel Rock, which has proved to be the most challenging segment of the bluff.”

Weather permitting, the closures will take place:

  • Thursday, Aug. 17 — 8:30 a.m. until 9 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 24 — 8:30 a.m. until 9 p.m.

“Rock scaling is a complex and labour-intensive process, requiring work on cliff faces to safely remove dangerous rock material, and can be carried out only in daylight hours and during favourable weather conditions,” the ministry says.

It says the work is needed to repair damage caused by the Cameron Bluffs wildfire. To date, crews have removed about 200 dangerous trees and 600 tonnes of rock-scaling debris, and further work includes installing 1.2 kilometres of barrier and rock fencing.

Full reopening late August

Highway 4 is expected to fully reopen to two-way traffic at the end of August, which is later than expected due to “weather-related shutdowns enacted to protect the safety of workers and travellers,” the ministry says.

The highway is the only paved road connecting Vancouver Island with its west coast communities of Port Alberni, Tofino and Ucluelet, and in recent weeks locals and tourism operators have voiced their concerns about the closures to CHEK News.

“In addition to the closures on Aug. 17 and 24, the highway will continue to be closed for two periods daily, from 9 a.m. until 11:30 a.m., and from 1:30 p.m. until 5 p.m., until the work is completed,” the ministry says.

There will be no closures overnight or on weekends, according to the ministry. It encourages drivers to check DriveBC before travelling. 

A four-hour detour between Lake Cowichan and Port Alberni is also open for travel, and more information can be found here.

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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