Digital speed limit signs aimed at decreasing weather-related crashes in B.C. go live

Click to play video 'Variable speed limit signs hope to make B.C. roads safer' Variable speed limit signs hope to make B.C. roads safer
WATCH: Variable speed limit signs are now up and running on three British Columbia highways. The signs enforce reduced speeds during bad weather. Ted Chernecki has more on how they work and where you'll find them – Jun 2, 2016

Variable speed limit signs geared to change with weather and road conditions are now up and running in three locations in the province.

The Transportation Ministry activated several high-tech signs along the Coquihalla, Sea-to-Sky and Trans-Canada Highway near Revelstoke on Thursday to help reduce the amount and severity of weather-related crashes.

“It is important drivers understand that along these corridors, these signs aren’t speed readers — they are the law,” said Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone.

“These electronic signs will adjust the speed limit according to conditions and will require drivers to slow down and reduce their speed in bad weather.”

A total of 47 digital signs were installed along the routes where weather can change quickly and catch drivers off guard. Eighteen speed signs were installed along Highway 1 from Perry River to Revelstoke, 13 on the Coquihalla from the Portia Interchange to the former toll plaza and 16 on the Sea-to-Sky from Squamish to just south of Whistler.

Story continues below advertisement

“Many highways in B.C. pass through different climate zones, and the Sea to Sky Highway is no exception,” said West Vancouver-Sea to Sky MLA Jordan Sturdy in a statement.

“Motorists that drive Highway 99 are familiar with rapidly changing weather conditions, where it is not uncommon to experience sunny and dry conditions, as well as rain, sleet or a full-blown snowstorm somewhere along the way. These signs alert drivers to the need to adjust their speed to current conditions.”

 The $12.5-million project will take continuously updated data from traffic, pavement and visibility sensors and feed the information to each of the signs, which will adjust the speed limit to reflect conditions.