Tuesday’s heavy rains in Williams Lake caused damage to the switchback on Frizzi Road that goes down into the River Valley resulting in the road being closed.
Last winter the city wanted to close the road because of safety concerns, but after residents who live on Moore Mountain complained, the city left the road open for people to use at their own risk.
“It took that one rain fall on Tuesday that was high intensity and short duration to basically destroy the road,” said the city’s director of municipal services Gary Muraca Thursday. “I just finished walking the entirety of the road and there are washouts everywhere and it’s basically impassable. It’s channelled all the way down from the top, even exposing old car bodies and things like that.”
Permanent barricades are in place at both ends of the road and the city has no intention of opening the road, Muraca said.
“As the road authority we have to err on the side of caution,” he said, noting the road needs a lot of engineering and reconstruction before the city could even think about opening it.
Visitors to the River Valley are welcome to park at the Comer Street entrance.
“When using the River Valley, please remain on the road or on posted trails in order to avoid trespassing on private property. ATVs and dirt bikes are not permitted in the River Valley Recreation Sites,” the city stated in a notice on its website. “When using the Comer Street access, please use extra caution. In addition to public works vehicles, the Comer access route is now used by the rural residents and resource license holders in the River Valley.”
The city is working with provincial resource staff to identify a safer access route to the river valley, Muraca added.
Another area of the city impacted on Tuesday was the storm water infrastructure on Soda Creek Road near West Fraser and Tolko.
“The system was performing but it just couldn’t take it away fast enough,” Muraca said. “We had some flooding out on the tracks so we stayed late on July 12 to clean up and remove the debris.”
There was no damage, but the railway tracks had to be closed for a few hours.
“The tracks actually looked like they were floating,” Muraca added.