Coquihalla now open

UPDATE 10:37 a.m.

The northbound lane of the Coquihalla highway is now open but the DriveBC travel advisory remains in effect.

UPDATE 9:05 a.m.

The northbound lane of the Coquihalla highway is closed as crews continue to deal with vehicles in the ditch.

The DriveBC travel advisory remains in effect.

UPDATE 7:59 a.m.

The Coquihalla highway is now open in both directions at Merritt and northbound at exit 202, Portia Interchange to Merritt.

The DriveBC travel advisory remains in effect and non- essential travel is not recommended.

UPDATE 7:38 a.m.

The Coquihalla remains closed at this hour and DriveBC has issued a travel advisory for the stretch between Hope and Merritt.

Expect limited visibility due to blowing snow, and compact ice on the highway.

Travelers are advised to exercise extreme caution, adjust driving to road conditions, to watch for maintenance crews performing storm cleanup, and consider alternate travel plans.

UPDATE 5:30 a.m.

Highway 3 is now open in both directions after an avalanche forced the closure 30 km west of Creston from the Kootenay Pass for 27 km.

You are advised to check DriveBC for the latest conditions before setting out for weekend travel.

UPDATE 5:20 a.m.

More challenges on the highways this morning.

The Coquihalla is closed at snowshed hill this hour due to multiple vehicle's spun out and a jackknifed semi.

The highway is closed in both directions from Hope to Merritt alternate routes are highway 3 and highway 1, it is scheduled to open again at 7 a.m.

Highway 3 is also closed in both directions Friday morning due to an avalanche.

The highway is closed 30 km west of Creston from the Kootenay Pass for 27 km, crews are working to clear an avalanche deposit.

An alternate route is available from Nelson to Creston via the highway 3A, Kootenay Lake Ferry. Estimated time of opening is 6 a.m.

There is also a snowfall warning out for the Coquihalla Highway - Hope to Merritt and highway 3 - Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass.

Snowfall amounts between 15 and 20 cm is expected.

Heavy snow is expected to impact the Coquihalla Highway tonight. The highest amounts are forecast near the Summit where up to 20 cm will fall. The snow level will lower through the night so that by early morning sections just north of Hope may see snow accumulations.

Snow will end Friday morning as the system responsible moves to the east.

Prepare for quickly changing and deteriorating travel conditions. Visibility may be suddenly reduced at times in heavy snow.

Weather in the mountains can change suddenly resulting in hazardous driving conditions.

ShiftIntoWinter.ca reminds drivers to know before you go. Adjust to winter driving behaviour and use winter tires and chains.

UPDATE: 11:20 p.m.

The Coquihalla Highway is closed in the southbound direction between Merritt and Hope Thursday night after a commercial vehicle jackknifed at Snowshed Hill, blocking the road. 

DriveBC has no estimated time of reopening. 

Highway cams in the area show falling snow, and snow-covered roads. 

ORIGINAL: 6:30 p.m

One lane in each direction of the Coquihalla Highway was closed Thursday afternoon after a semi-truck crashed just south of Merritt.

The crash occurred at about 3 p.m., with the large truck tipping onto its side into the centre area between the south and northbound lanes.

As of 6 p.m., recovery efforts, involving two large tow trucks, were still ongoing.

It's unclear if anyone was injured in the crash.

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