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HYDRO TOWER COLLAPSE SHUTS HIGHWAY 1 IN B.C. CANADA


SURRY, B.C, Camada - Rising water levels and erosion along the Fraser River caused a hydro transmission tower in Surrey, B.C., to collapse Monday night, causing a major power outage and highway closures. A second tower further inland collapsed as a result of tension caused when the first tower toppled.
The tower collapse sent high-voltage wires into the river and onto roads and snapped hydro poles. The surrounding area was closed to traffic because of the potential risk.
  • Highway 1 and the Port Mann Bridge were closed in both directions, and about 25,000 people were initially without of power. BC Hydro crews are working throughout the night at the scene.
  • David Lebeter, vice-president of field operations and safety with BC Hydro, said high water levels on the Fraser River eroded the soil surrounding the tower. Lebeter said BC Hydro had been aware of erosion around one tower and crews made temporary repairs.
  • The tower remains standing, but it was another tower downstream that collapsed. "We became aware of a problem with that earlier today, and the situation developed very quickly.
  • “The tower pulled down another tower inland on the other side of the CN railyards,” Lebeter told the Vancouver Province.
  • Lebeter said the power cables were deactivated instantly and there are no safety issues.
RCMP in Surrey and Coquitlam, however, shut down Highway 1 and the coast guard halted river traffic for safety reasons. Highway 1 is closed east of the Port Mann Bridge, the main connector between Vancouver and the eastern suburbs
Sgt. Peter Thiessen said "steps have been taken to close down the Port Mann Bridge based on the extent of the downed wires that cross over the Fraser River and over into Coquitlam.
Source: CBC
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