Boaters cautioned at Site C

BC Hydro says boaters and river users are to use caution when passing through the Site C dam site.

The company said Friday it will be performing in-river work on both banks of the Peace River at the dam site to prepare for river diversion later this year.

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Boaters can expect in-river hazards due to shallow areas close to the work site and material being placed into the river, BC Hydro said. Restricted areas will be marked with safety signage and beacons.

The Peace and Moberly Rivers will be permanently closed at Site C starting June 15.

A debris management system will be installed two kilometres upstream of the construction area.

A seasonal portage program to transport non-motorized vessels will be available after river closure.

On Thursday, BC Hydro said it would begin ramping up construction activities Site C after a two-month slowdown. The first increase in work will focus on restarting some of the main civil works on the earthfill dam and roller-compacted concrete dam buttress.

A significant portion of construction was suspended in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, cutting back its workforce at the camp outside Fort St. John by more than half.

Construction was wound down primarily on the south bank of the Peace River, where the powerhouse and spillways are being built.

For the last two months, BC Hydro has instead focused work on the north bank, where the river diversion system need to be completed by a September deadline.

Construction has also continued on Highway 29 clearing and road realignments, and transmission line construction.

There were 828 workers reported at the camp May 15, none of them in self-isolation.

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca

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