Good news for N.B.: Trans-Canada to reopen Friday as floodwaters recede

FREDERICTON — A major milestone has been hit in New Brunswick’s flood recovery: Transportation officials hope to reopen the Trans-Canada Highway between Fredericton and Moncton at noon Friday.

The four-lane stretch — usually used by 10,000 to 12,000 vehicles daily — has been closed for the past week because of record-breaking flooding in the province.

The water has receded from the road but now crews are removing all the debris, mainly logs and driftwood.

Norm Clouston, the general manager of Maritime Road Development Corp., says crews expected to remove about 25 tandem truck loads of debris by noon local time today and will remove another 20-30 truckloads.

As flood levels drop in the province, Geoffrey Downey, spokesman for the Emergency Measures Organization, said it may be safe for some residents to return to their homes, but he urged people to take a cautious approach.

“If it’s safe to get back into your home and begin, then absolutely. That’s the key thing we’re preaching right now. You have to do it safely,” he said Thursday.

“I can only imagine how eager people are to get back and start figuring out what their immediate future holds, but it doesn’t make any sense if your home is still filled with water and part of the river. Hold on if you can and wait and do it safely.”

In Fredericton, water levels were down to 6.8 metres after reaching 8.1 metres on Monday.

In Saint John, they had gone down to 5.23 metres Thursday after being up to 5.75 metres days ago. But, he says the city is still well over flood stage.

Downey says 1,516 people from 655 households had registered with the Red Cross, indicating they had evacuated their homes.

Officials say residents still need to be careful in handling the water, since it’s suspected it has been fouled by different contaminants.

Emergency officials were also pleading with residents to be patient, as some roads that were submerged may not be safe to drive on until they are inspected.

The Canadian Red Cross says it will begin distributing flood cleanup kits, which include a mop, broom, scrub brush, sponges, latex gloves, masks and garbage bags.

Just Posted

Red Deer church donates to Safe Harbour

It was all about helping those in need at Safe Harbour in… Continue reading

Former firefighter with PTSD sues Syncrude over suspended benefits, dismissal

CALGARY — A lawsuit filed by a former firefighter and paramedic against… Continue reading

Call for tighter bail rules after Saudi sex-crime suspect vanishes

HALIFAX — Mohammed Zuraibi Alzoabi may have hoped to quietly disappear from… Continue reading

Democrats aren’t buying Trump’s shutdown-ending ‘compromise’

WASHINGTON — In a bid to break the shutdown stalemate, President Donald… Continue reading

Updated: Red Deer welcomes 2019 Canada Winter Games Team Alberta

About 250 Alberta athletes are participating in the Games

Students seen mocking Native Americans could face expulsion

One 11-minute video of the confrontation shows the Haka dance and students loudly chanting

Curtain rising Sunday night on total lunar eclipse

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The celestial curtain will be rising soon on… Continue reading

At 30-day mark, shutdown logjam remains over border funding

WASHINGTON — Thirty days into the partial government shutdown, Democrats and Republicans… Continue reading

Holocaust victims buried after remains found in UK museum

LONDON — The remains of six unidentified Holocaust victims were buried in… Continue reading

Giuliani: ‘So what’ if Trump and Cohen discussed testimony

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani left open Sunday the… Continue reading

Photos: Rocks fly at 37th Annual Oilmen’s Bonspiel

Twenty-nine teams gathered at the Pidherney Curling Centre in Red Deer for… Continue reading

Death toll reaches 79 in Mexico fuel pipeline fire horror

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — People in the town where a gasoline explosion killed… Continue reading

With Trump out, Davos chief eyes fixing world architecture

DAVOS, Switzerland — The founder of the World Economic Forum says U.S.… Continue reading

Mexican pipeline explosion kills 71, leaves nightmare of ash

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — Gerardo Perez returned Saturday to the scorched field in… Continue reading

Most Read