The blast of artic air that has enveloped the Great Lakes is causing major problems for truck traffic between Michigan and Ontario. Canadian officials have been forced to close Highway 402 which connects with the Blue Water bridge. Here are two reports on the situation in Ontario and in Port Huron:
Digital Journal reports:
A "red alert" issued by Emergency Management Ontario for the stretch of Hwy. 402 between London and Sarnia has been canceled but a state of emergency remains in force.
680 News is reporting that three Canadian Forces military helicopters are now taking part in the rescue effort as hundreds remain stranded between the two cities.
The radio station quotes OPP Const. Chrystal Jones:
"Some of our OPP four-wheel drive vehicles were experiencing difficulties in the snow because again, the plows have not been out. And of course, vehicles have been abandoned in the middle of roadways, so they've become impassable."
Both police officers and local volunteers spent the night using snowmobiles to bring food and gas to stranded motorists and passengers. According to the Hamilton Spectator in some cases those stranded have been removed and taken to emergency shelters.The London Free Press are informing readers that "Some people have been stuck in their vehicles on the highway for more than 24 hours."
The Time Herald in Port Huron reports traffic has stopped on the Blue Water bridge:
Chuck Chrapko, president and CEO of Blue Water Bridge Canada, said the 402 remains closed in both directions from the border to London, Ontario. The closure of the main highway is resulting in commercial vehicles being stopped from crossing the Blue Water Bridge. Passenger vehicles are allowed to cross the border but are being diverted directly into Sarnia.