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N.S. Transport Department reviewing closure of busy toll road due to early snow

The Transportation Department in Nova Scotia is reviewing what occurred when a portion of a busy toll highway was closed due to a snowfall on Friday, leaving drivers stranded for hours.
The Transportation Department in Nova Scotia is reviewing what occurred when a portion of a busy toll highway was closed due to a snowfall on Friday, leaving drivers stranded for hours. File/ Global News

The Transportation Department in Nova Scotia is reviewing what occurred when a portion of a busy toll highway was closed due to a snowfall on Friday, leaving drivers stranded for hours.

Motorists became trapped on the Cobequid Pass highway during the snowfall when trucks spun off the slick road in a hilly portion of the route.

READ MORE: ‘Significant’ rain predicted for Nova Scotia on Tuesday

The department announced the closure of the pass shortly before 8:30 p.m. that night and it required hours to clear a path.

Department spokesperson Marla MacInnis says in an email that the department will review what happened and determine if improvements can be made.

She says the department prepares the 45-kilometre section of Highway 104 – the main route into and out of the province – for winter one month earlier than the rest of the province.

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Out-of-province drivers and truckers may still have to pay Cobequid Pass tolls
Out-of-province drivers and truckers may still have to pay Cobequid Pass tolls

MacInnis said there are portions of the Cobequid Pass that have steep grades and “we run into issues when trucks begin to spin in these areas, causing blockages.”

“In the coming days, we will be reviewing the events of Friday night and our procedures to determine if there are ways our response can improve or closures can be prevented in the future,” she wrote.

“Further training for staff that work on the Cobequid Pass is scheduled within the coming weeks.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Nov. 10, 2019.