WATCH: Metro Vancouver traffic slowed to a crawl after the weekend storm knocked out power to key intersections
It’s been the biggest frustration for motorists across Metro Vancouver since Saturday: drivers struggling with the four-way stop procedure at intersections where traffic lights were down due to this weekend’s massive windstorm.
Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart said too many people ignored the rules of the road during Monday morning’s commute.
“The sensor’s not operating right now, the traffic is backing up all over the place and people have no concept of how to use a four-way stop procedure,” said Stewart. “We’re left with the worst possible situation on a Monday morning.”
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ICBC says the rules around four-way stops are clear.
“You want to treat an intersection as you would a four-way stop,” said ICBC’s Adam Grossman. “So the first person to arrive at the intersection has right of way. If you arrive at the same time, give way to the vehicle on the right.”
That wasn’t the only rule being broken. Some drivers in Langley ignored pylons placed to keep them from colliding with a fallen tree.
“We had about three-and-a-half thousand calls come in to our customer claims centre and about 500 more claims submitted online,” said Grossman. “So, certainly a much, much busier weekend than we would expect at this time of year.”
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Police said they weren’t able to have officers directing traffic at every intersection.
“This was a small disaster that we had over the weekend,” said Cst. Brian Montague of the Vancouver Police Department. “I think this was a good test, a good way for people to remind themselves that they may be without power for some time. They may be without emergency services.”
Police said the takeaway is that all drivers need to know how to handle themselves on the road safely.
-With files from Nadia Stewart