Tips for Safely Driving the Coquihalla Highway
- Take Advantage of the Chain-up Area
The BC Ministry of Transportation has recently opened up a facility for truckers right before Snowshed Hill that will allow them to make the necessary preparations for navigating the mountain pass. Truckers should always carry a full set of tire chains, and before you start your route, you should check over each one carefully to make sure they're in good working order.
Tire chains are non-negotiable for driving the Coquihalla Highway, but you should also make sure your truck's tires are properly filled and in good shape before starting your trip.
- Stay Out of the Left Lane
This is a new initiative aimed at keeping drivers safe and preventing total highway closures. Stuck commercial vehicles are the most common reason for extended closures, and this can put other drivers and province workers at risk.
All commercial vehicles are required to stay out of the leftmost lanes between Hope and Merritt, so keep this in mind when you're on the road. For more information, you can read the full article from the Ministry of Transportation.
- Keep a Stocked Emergency Kit
Accidents and road closures are unfortunately common through this stretch, and drivers can be stranded on the road for hours. You may already have a basic emergency kit, but it's best to add a few extra supplies. Be sure that you have enough water and non-perishable food to last overnight, and keep an extra blanket and hand warmers in your cab in case you need to conserve fuel.
You may also want to carry a power bank for your cell phone so that you can keep in contact with your company or clients. In addition, it's strongly recommended to refuel your truck before you start up the pass so that you don't run out of gas if you get stuck in traffic.
Safety is Your Top Priority
Navigating the Coquihalla Highway is not an easy task, but as long as you're prepared and careful, you should stay safe throughout the season.
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