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Further storms inbound as British Columbia works to reopen transport links

Transport links are being reestablished to the Port of Vancouver, Canada’s largest maritime gateway, following dramatic floods that took out road, rail and pipeline arteries earlier this month.

Three out of four highways linking Vancouver with inland destinations have reopened for essential travel – highway five remains closed, likely for a long time, smashed hard by what local officials have described as the worst storm to hit British Columbia in a century.

One of the rail links to/from Vancouver was restored on Tuesday and a second one reopened yesterday. In both cases, speed and length restrictions will be in place for the foreseeable future, German carrier Hapag-Lloyd stated in an update to clients.

CP Rail has begun accepting dry export traffic to Centerm, Vanterm and Deltaport terminals from all inland rail terminals. DP World’s Fraser Surrey Port Terminal is still not relinked however while the Vancouver Intermodal Terminal (VIF) remains closed for gate traffic until further notice.

CN Rail, meanwhile, is making some box shipments to the US from Vancouver.

“Vessel delays, increased yard congestion and heightened anchorage demand are expected to continue,” Hapag-Lloyd warned in an update yesterday.

British Columbia is bracing for more rainfall in the coming days and weeks as the province works to rebuild after unprecedented flooding earlier this month.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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