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Nov 10, 2022
Slabs of old highway pavement can still be seen across the river from newly rebuilt sections of Highway 8, a road that serves as a vital connection for First Nations communities living in the region.
Christine Minnabarriet, Cooks Ferry Indian Band chief, said she is happy to see the highway open again — because the route isn’t just a secondary road for the community.
Minnaberriet said there are nearly 400 people registered as members of the Cooks Ferry band, with 26 reserves spread out across the Nicola Valley. Policing, healthcare and ambulance services are also spread out within different jurisdictions.
“When a highway closes, this is what connects us to our families and our resources and our people and our spirit,” Minnabarriet said.
According to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, seven kilometres of Highway 8 were lost to last November’s atmospheric river, with 15 sites where both lanes of the road were swept away.
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