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TransLink prepares for heavy snowfall Saturday

Transit provider is bracing to handle between 10 and 30 centimetres of snow.
TransLink is preparing for heavy snowfall this weekend.

TransLink is pulling every stop to get ready for major snowfall in the region Saturday.

Periods of light snow are expected to start Saturday afternoon and intensify to heavy snow Saturday night — with up to 20 to 30 centimetres of snow forecast for the region before it eases on Sunday morning for most areas,

In a release, TransLink said it is ensuring all transit services are prepared by:

  • Calling in extra staff to co-ordinate service.
  • Co-ordinating with municipalities on snow-clearing if priority routes are affected.
  • Preparing special trucks to spread anti-icing solution on trolley wires.
  • Replacing articulated buses with 40-foot conventional buses, when necessary, as they are more agile on steep, slippery areas.
  • Coupling Millennium Line trains into four-car configurations to increase capacity, with SkyTrain attendants ready to monitor guideways.
  • Readying a special overnight SkyTrain which sprays de-icer on the power rail to keep trains moving.

If conditions worsen, TransLink says it will:

  • Install brass “cutters” on some trolley buses to cut through ice on trolley wires.
  • Install tire socks on buses on Burnaby Mountain and specific North Shore and Vancouver routes, where hills and traction are an issue.
  • Implement Snow Shuttles.
  • Position SkyTrain attendants at the front of each Expo and Millennium Line train to improve reliability on the system by limiting emergency braking triggered by heavy snowfall.
  • Run trains through the night if snow is especially heavy to keep tracks clear.
  • Equip HandyDART service with two staff members per vehicle to ensure customers get safely to their door.
  • Activate further staff increases to assist customers across the system.

Transit riders are also advised to dress for the weather conditions, allow extra travel time and plan commutes using Trip Planner.

Riders can also sign up for Transit Alerts, follow TransLink on Twitter (@TransLink) for updates or call Customer Service at 604.953.3333.