As of this morning (Jan. 6), Flood Hope Road at Richmond Hill still remains closed.
Yesterday (Jan. 5), at approximately 11:20 a.m, a 12-tonne rock fell off the side of the hill, falling 400 feet to strike the road. The impact left a hole in the asphalt measuring roughly one foot by five feet.
Both the Hope RCMP and the District of Hope were on scene to assess the situation and start clearing away the rock, which broke into pieces upon impact.
No injuries were reported though witnesses saw a car get hit by part of the rock before carrying on.
“Please stay off Richmond Hill for the next couple of hours. It just makes our job a little bit easier, and a little less stressful, when we’re not trying to try to turn people around all the time,” says Bob Clarke, operations manager for the district.
Clarke anticipated that the road would be closed for the next three to four hours while they waited for a geotech assessment. The rockslide is believed to be caused by a freeze-thaw cycle, a process where water gets in behind the rock, or in between the cracks and crevices. The water freezes and expands. It holds the rock in place while it’s frozen, but makes it unstable once it thaws out.