BC Ferries announced it has added extra sailings to accommodate passengers delayed at the Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen terminals due to the windstorm.
The 8 p.m. Coastal Celebration sailing from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen has been cancelled. The Coastal Celebration is now sailing out of Tsawwassen at 8 p.m. and 12 a.m.
The 7 p.m. sailing from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen is scheduled to go ahead but all vehicle spaces are full. An extra 10 p.m. sailing as been added out of Swartz Bay but it is expected to leave closer to 11 p.m. Anyone without a reservation
On Saturday, there will be an extra 8 a.m. sailing and 12 p.m. sailing out of Swartz Bay and a 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. out of Tsawwassen.
Strong winds hit Vancouver Island, Metro Vancouver and the Southern Gulf Islands earlier Friday.
A wind warning is still in effect for the Southern Gulf Islands and Metro Vancouver. The wind warning was cancelled for Greater Victoria late Friday afternoon.
Over the western sections of Metro Vancouver, as well as the Southern Gulf Islands, winds have shifted sharply to northwest 50 to 70 km/h. Near the water wind gusts up to 90 km/h are possible.
The high winds are expected to ease over Metro Vancouver and the Southern Gulf Islands by the evening.
The windstorm prompted BC Ferries to start cancelling sailings between the Vancouver and Victoria areas, as well as between Vancouver and Nanaimo, on Friday morning. Deborah Marshall, executive director of public affairs, said the Coastal Celebration also caused some damage to a marine structure (leaning pad) when it was leaving the terminal, meaning ferries had to be more cautious coming in and out of berth.
However, Marshall said there still would have been several cancellations without the damage as the winds were so strong during the storm. Crews are expected to start repairs tomorrow.
The following sailings were cancelled Friday:
- 11 a.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 12 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 1 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 3 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 4 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 5 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 9 p.m. from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- 11 a.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 1 p.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 3 p.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 5 p.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 6 p.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 7 p.m. from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay
- 10:40 a.m. from Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay
- 1 p.m. from Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay
- 3:20 p.m. from Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay
- 6:35 p.m. from Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay
Sailings did briefly resume from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen at 2 p.m. but there were long sailing waits before another wave of cancellations.
There is no vehicle space left on any of the sailings at either terminal.
BC Ferries says space on a sailing can become available closer to the departure time due to last-minute cancellations or unused reservations. Available space will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis at the terminal.
“The safety of our passengers and crew is of primary importance to us. We don’t take the decision to cancel sailings lightly, as we know customers rely on us to get to their destinations. We will resume service as soon as it is safe to do so,” BC Ferries wrote in its service notices.
— Mary Griffin (@Mary_Griffin_) October 25, 2019
Passengers are also facing long wait times as the following photo from Dwayne Yanaraca shows.
There are several power outages in Campbell River, Courtenay, Nanaimo, Parksville and Qualicum Beach.
BC Hydro is also dealing with outages following a snowstorm in northern B.C. and a windstorm in the southern Interior. For a full list of areas affected by power outages, check the BC Hydro website.
Drive BC is reminding drivers to use the four-way stop procedure at intersections when traffic signals are out during power outages.
Heads Up! – Winds storms are causing power outages across BC. Please remember to use the 4 way stop procedure at intersection when the traffic signals are not working.
Learn 4 way stop procedure: https://t.co/MmCzW5Sk9g
— Drive BC (@DriveBC) October 25, 2019