Section of Arrow Lakes Drive temporarily closed Tuesday due to downed line

Motorists were driving over the cable without knowing if it was electrified

  • Sep. 24, 2020 12:00 a.m.

A portion of Arrow Lakes Drive was closed to traffic for approximately 30 minutes on Tuesday due to a downed utility line.

Castlegar Fire Department (CFD) fire chief Sam Lattanzio said the incident occurred approximately one kilometre from the intersection of Arrow Lakes Drive and Columbia Ave. at around 2:37 p.m.

The line reportedly fell down across the road after the anchor system near the top of the pole collapsed.

CFD crews initially closed the road and kept traffic far away from the cable because they couldn’t confirm if it was electrified. After they confirmed it wasn’t, FortisBC crews arrived and put the line back up onto the pole.

While the road was only briefly closed, traffic still got backed up as far as the Robson Bridge.

People need to stay far away from downed lines if they come across them and call 911, according to Lattanzio.

“There were many vehicles driving over the line before it was reported to be down by a local resident,” said Lattanzio.

“It’s really not a good idea to be crossing over any type of downed line — period.”

CFD crews saw at least six motorists drive over the line on their way to the scene.

Lattanzio emphasized that people should stay back at least six metres — or twenty feet — from high voltage powers lines. Downed lines can also get caught up and damage vehicles or cause other things to fall down from a pole if they’re constantly being driven over.

Crews have requested that cable service providers inspect the cable and make sure it is properly re-installed so it doesn’t fall down again.

RELATED STORY: VIDEO: Tips to stay safe around downed, damaged power lines

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