BC Government

UPDATE: Alternate route now open as Highway 97 remains closed

Crews continue to see slope movement at the site of the rockslide

UPDATE: 1:30 p.m.

Highway 97 near Summerland remains closed with no estimated time for reopening, as crews continue to see slope movement at the site of the rockslide.

However, an alternate route is now open on the west side of Okanagan Lake, using the Trout Creek Forest Service Road between Peachland and Summerland.

Paula Cousins, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Deputy Director for the Southern Interior Region, said the new route accommodates light vehicles and provides a better connection for local traffic travelling from Summerland to Peachland or vice versa.

The full route includes the Princeton Summerland Road west of Summerland, the Trout Creek Forest Service Road and the Peachland Forest Service Road to Princeton Avenue in Peachland.

It has been plowed, graded, sanded and directional signage is in place.

The maximum speed limit is 50 kilometres an hour and drivers using this route should have winter tires.

“Using this route to travel between the communities of Summerland and Peachland will be approximately 45 minutes faster than using the 201 Forest Service Road,” Cousins said.

Construction continues at Callan Road to create a two-lane detour around the slide area.

The detour will accommodate commercial vehicles, and is expected to open early next week, should no unexpected challenges arise.

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Highway 97 near Summerland remains closed this morning, due to a rockslide.

The slide is located between Bridgeman Road and North Beach Road. No vehicles are being allowed through the area due to the instability of the slope.

Two existing detours are in place, one involves Highway 3A, Highway 3, Highway 5A and Highway 97.

Another detour, for vehicles five tonnes or less followed the 201 Forest Service Road. The road can be accessed via Warren Avenue and Carmi Avenue in Penticton and off Highway 33 near McCulloch Road in Kelowna. Signage and traffic control have been installed at both locations.

The speed limit along this road is 50 kilometres an hour.

RELATED: Detour will be constructed around rock slide

Paula Cousins, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Deputy Director for the Southern Interior Region, said the ministry has been working with local First Nations groups to get a detour put in place from Callan Road past the slide area and back to the highway.

This detour will require between 3,000 and 4,000 cubic metres of fill to construct a couple of hundred metres of connecting road.

RELATED: Lengthy detours for Summerlanders cut off by rock slide

Crews will work two 10-hour shifts each day for four to five days to get this detour in place, provided there are no unexpected issues during the construction.

At the site of the rock slide, crews are continuing to work to stabilize the rock face.

More updates to come.

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