I would like to give a rebuttal to “The Armchair Mayor’s” reply today about accidents on the Coquihalla Highway.
He is implying that adding a toll will make the highway safer. This is a lie and a scam. I was involved in an accident back in February of 1991. It was purely the result of poor maintainence. There was a toll on the highway then.
I am originally from Reno, Nevada. We had the Donner pass between Reno and San Francisco. Over there they have California Highway patrol set up on each end of the hiway. EVERY car is inspected as it drives through the chain control area. No chains or winter tires, you don’t get back on the hiway. It is a simple solution.
No all-season tires during any serious snow storm. There are people there to put chains on automobiles. And people to take them off at the other end. That highway has 10 times the traffic and the highest pass is 6,800 or 7,800 feet. $1,000-$1,500 fines for semi’s that try to get by the road block. Chains are $300-$500 a set.
This could be eliminated quite easily. We also need to set higher standards for the road contractors. If not, let’s go back to when the province and the Ministry of Highways did the road maintainence. A toll will do nothing until the RCMP enforce chain and tire requirements during snow storms.
The fault lies with a police force that doesn’t want to or doesn’t think that our lives are worth the price of them policing our current tire policies. I have four studded tires for winter and ‘all season’ (three-season tires, they are not winter tires) for the rest of the year. I also carry tires chains made from logging truck chains for my pickup in case of an emergency.
So no tolls, but real chain control will save lives and money. The money saved by ICBC will more than pay for the two extra officers needed at each end of the highway during chain control or adverse driving conditions.
I’ve driven the Coquihalla Highway during a blizzard and never saw an RCMP. That is not acceptable. All semi’s need chains to pull the hill from the snow shed to the old toll booth area during any snow storms, period! No exceptions.