Deadly storm cuts transport links around Vancouver

Deadly storm cuts transport links around Vancouver
An image from Nasa's worldview on Tuesday shows the extent of the flooding across the British Columbia region. Source: NASA
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Daily US Times: A deadly storm has severed road and rail links around Vancouver, Canada. The storm is described by officials as a once-in-a-century weather event.

After being damaged by severe flooding, two motorways connecting the West Coast city were closed.

Due to massive storm, thousands of people were forced to leave their homes.

A woman was killed in a highway landslide, and according to rescuers, at least two other people are missing.

The woman’s body was found near Lillooet, about 250km from Vancouver, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

RCMP Sgt Janelle Shoihet said that rescuers hadn’t yet determined the number of occupied vehicles that were lost in the slide, AFP news agency reports.

Motorist Kathie Rennie told CBC News that she saw the landslide come down on traffic that was already at a standstill south of Lillooet.

She said: “No sooner do we get back into our vehicles, the people that were in front of us are just screaming and running. The look on their faces, it was like a tsunami was coming. It was the scariest thing that I’ve ever seen.”

She added: “I just turned around, and I’m just watching the whole side of the mountain coming down and taking out these cars… everything just being swept away. Just complete panic.”

Rob Fleming, the provincial minister of transportation, told a news conference it was the “worst weather storm in a century”. Minister of public safety, Mike Farnworth, said he had “no doubt” that the storm was linked to climate change.

Thousands of homes in British Columbia were evacuated after an “atmospheric river” – a long strip of moisture in the atmosphere that transports water from tropical regions towards the poles – dumped the region’s monthly rainfall average in just 24 hours.

All seven thousand residents of Merritt, about 120 miles north-east of Vancouver, were ordered to flee their homes on Monday.

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