Patrick Livolsi, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure assistant deputy minister and professional engineer, has issued the following statement regarding the recent snowfall on the Lower Mainland and reports of vehicle damage on the Alex Fraser and the Port Mann bridges:
“Driver and traveller safety is our top priority, and ministry and contractor staff are on site and are closely monitoring the bridges to ensure they are safe for the travelling public.
“While it is rare for enough snow and ice to accumulate on the Alex Fraser Bridge because of the design of the bridge, we understand there have been reports of damaged vehicles while they were crossing that bridge today. We are also looking into reports of a small number of vehicles being damaged on the Port Mann Bridge.
“We are looking into these reports and encourage any drivers who may have experienced damage to contact the ministry so that we can determine how it might have happened. We have been in touch with one driver who had windshield damage while crossing the Alex Fraser and we are working with the individual now.
“We will continue to actively investigate these reports and we will use this information to identify any improvements that can be made for the future.
“For example, on the Port Mann Bridge, cable-sweepers have been installed to clear the snow from the cables before ice has the chance to form. This system limits the size of ice that could accumulate on the Port Mann Bridge’s cables and significantly reduces the chance of damage to vehicles.
“As weather in the mainland is expected to continue to be cold with winter-like conditions, we will continue to closely monitor both bridges to ensure the travelling public is safe.
“If you have a damaged vehicle from falling snow or ice, we want to hear from you. Here is the number to call: 604 424-8240. Please leave your name and phone number and someone will return your call as soon as possible.”