Letters to the Editor: January 20

The troubles with Highway 95A; Thanks to Subaru Cranbrook

Highway 95A

Re: “MLA says ministry holding Mainroad accountable.”

I would like to know if the Townsman will complete the story by asking Mr. Bennett who holds him and Minister Todd Stone accountable for local highway conditions that are unsafe in the summer and more so in the winter.

What I am talking about is the condition of Highway 95A.

• When leaving Kimberley to Wasa there is a sign that indicates bumps for 26 km, and when travelling south from Wasa to Kimberley there again is a sign there are bumps for 26 km. These signs have been there for many years. This is a joke. There are weeds growing through the pavement on the area where the white lines should be. There are so many cracks across this highway all you have to do is add winter and now you have frost heave that continually pounds on your suspension. Travelling this highway at the rated speed is brutal and unsafe.

• There are huge bumps four miles south of Marysville on Highway 95A, near Porteous Road, which have been there for years along with the signs indicating “bump.” By the time you see the sign it is too late, as you are already launched in the air.

• When driving down the hill past the airport turn-off, just before going onto the McPhee Bridge, the pavement drops right, then left and back right, throwing vehicles back and forth just before the bridge deck. Add rain, snow or a vehicle who is towing a travel trailer and this is very unsafe for an unprepared driver. Why haven’t these situations been repaired?

• The intersection of Theatre Road/Mission Road and Highway 95A has been the scene of many accidents over the years. It is dangerous in the summer as motorists try to enter or cross Highway 95A and dodge vehicles coming from either direction. Add the unknowns which are road surface conditions,rain or snow, other driver experience or state of mind.

I sent many emails to Minister Todd Stone in 2016, pointing out these situations and asking why nothing has been done. I suggested amber flashing lights be installed on both sides of the intersection of 95A to get drivers to slow down when travelling north and south, and allowing motorists entering from Theatre Road or Mission Road a safer entry to get through this intersection. I believe Mr. Bennett is aware of this. After saying he would reply right away to my email, Mr. Stone did not. It took many extra emails, and all I got from Minister Todd Stone was “We are monitoring the situation?”

Tell that to the persons that are injured in the accidents or their families and the impact it has on their lives.

So I ask you Mr. Crawley: if Mr. Bennett is willing to hold Mainroad accountable and have their contract cancelled for not completing their responsibility, who will hold Mr. Bennett and Mr. Todd Stone accountable for not providing us with safe roads to begin with?

If you are going to write about our highway snowplowing and sanding contractor and include comments from Mr. Bennett, I expect you will write another article providing information on who holds Mr. Bennett and Mr. Stone accountable for the safety and conditions on our local highways as well. I bet either nothing will ever be done to make the highways between Wasa, Kimberley and Cranbrook safer, or this will be made a political issue by the Liberal candidate in the next election to get reelected.

Craig Little/Cranbrook

Subaru Cranbrook’s Heart

This week, a work colleague and I were scheduled to fly into Cranbrook to travel to Creston. While at YVR, we noted that there was a mix up with our rental car booking.

We had a travel agent on the phone, were calling rental companies ourselves and came to understand that there were no vehicles available to rent anywhere in Cranbrook — with the exception of a large moving truck. We were frantic as the plane was boarding shortly!

Both my colleague and I have owned Subarus for over 20 years. I quickly decided to call your local Subaru dealership to see if they perhaps had a courtesy car that we could rent. This was a last attempt to secure transportation.

What happened next defied belief. The Sales Manager at Subaru, Huy Nguyen, listened carefully to my story and said that he would speak with the President and GM Jim Szakacs. Within a few minutes, as promised, he called back to say that they would provide us with a car AND pick us up at the airport in Cranbrook. When we touched down, a driver from your local Subaru dealership called my cell phone and was already waiting at the entrance.

This was a truly unexpected and incredible display of kindness. Your town certainly has a gem in this local business and we wish them all the best!

Deanne Zeidler/Lillooet, B.C.