FORT NELSON, B.C. – The Canada Public Works office out of Fort Nelson believes last Friday’s washout on Highway 97 near Coal River was due to a beaver dam giving out.

A contract asset manager for Public Services and Procurement Canada, George Smith, says that the office is unsure how long it will take to repair the area or how much it will cost.

Engineers are scheduled to view the site on Wednesday.

A detour using an older highway alignment will be used until repairs are completed.

The detour is available at Kilometre 900 for South Bound traffic leaving from Watson Lake and at Kilometre 897 for North Bound Traffic leaving Fort Nelson.

The road is down to single-lane alternating traffic. Drivers are asked to follow the pilot car and obey road signs.

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Spencer Hall is a news reporter for and a recent graduate of the British Columbia Institute of Technology’s Radio Arts & Entertainment program. Growing up in Northwest B.C. made Spencer aware of the importance of local journalism, independent media, and reconciliation. In his spare time, you can find Spencer reading, playing video games, or at the FSJ dog park with his dog, Teddy.