VANCOUVER — Metro Vancouver’s shining new Port Mann Bridge may have opened to much fanfare earlier this month, but it’s now closed for safety reasons amid a snowstorm.
RCMP shut the bridge in both directions on Wednesday at about 2 p.m. because large chunks of ice were falling from the top of the span and slamming into vehicles below. It was expected to re-open later in the afternoon.
Sgt. Peter Thiessen said the ice has damaged vehicles and even injured one motorist who needed an ambulance.
High winds and a thick blanket of snow has covered much of Metro Vancouver, causing ferry cancellations and traffic headaches.
B.C. Ferries cancelled several sailings between the mainland and Victoria and Nanaimo, but service resumed by 3 p.m., leaving travellers with long delays.
The snow also forced the closure of the Simon Fraser University campus in Burnaby and all Douglas College campuses while the University of B.C. had to reschedule exams set for noon onward and some elementary and high school students got a day off school.
The storm followed just 24 hours after a similar blizzard hit the region, snarling traffic from the early morning to the noon hour on Tuesday.