Don't stop to take photos of B.C.'s flood-damaged Coquihalla Highway, drivers told

A key British Columbia highway has reopened to all traffic after being torn apart by disastrous flooding in November but it only took hours for the Transportation Ministry to issue a safety reminder.

In a post on social media, the ministry says it has received reports of people stopping “in unsafe ways” to take pictures along the Coquihalla Highway corridor, also known as Highway 5.

A roughly 130-kilometre stretch of the multi-lane, high-speed link between the Lower Mainland and the Interior was ripped up by floods or slides that also collapsed or washed out seven bridges during a series of powerful rainstorms.

Crews working around the clock spent 35 days to restore one lane in each direction, although the route was restricted to commercial vehicles as vital supply chains were re-established.

After reopening to all traffic Wednesday, the ministry says it quickly received reports of two unprepared drivers running out of gas while many more were stopping to take photos of the flood damage.

The Facebook post says the extent of the devastation and scope of the ongoing repairs are remarkable, but stopping on the narrower road or unfinished shoulders is extremely dangerous.