Tilting at BC Ferries

October 24, 2018 (NOTE – Only BC Ferries responded to this letter, and promised they would have flaggers for Summer 2019…which they did…didn’t solve the problem…but…)

Open letter to:

Ms. Tina Rogers, Area Manager

Ms. Haley Leach, District Development Technician

Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI)

MLA Adam Olsen

Premier John Horgan

Mr. Mark Collins, President and Chief Executive Officer, B.C. Ferries

Minister Claire Trevina, MOTI

Dear Ms. Rogers, Ms. Leach, Minister Trevina, Mr. Olson, Premier Horgan and Mr. Collins,

I am writing to you all today with regard to a recent number of encroachment notices being sent out to Salt Spring Island property and business owners by MOTI.

I understand the MOTI is enforcing the ownership of their right of way on Salt Spring, and in at least two instances which I have been made aware of, are demanding vehicles, related to businesses be removed from the side of the road on rights of ways, notably on Rainbow Road and Beddis Road.

Given MOTI is enforcing against private individuals, I would appreciate it if you could ALL please explain why these individuals are being discriminated against, since the largest encroacher onto the MOTI highways themselves, not the sides of highways, is the BC Ferry Corporation with their now constant parking of their customer traffic in the traffic lanes at Fulford and Vesuvius.

THOSE encroachments present a clear and present danger to motorists and pedestrians alike, and have, for many years now.

It is my understanding that MOTI forced BC Ferries, at both Swartz Bay and Tsawassen to expand their parking lots in order to get BC Ferries customers off the highways, thereby complying with the Motor Vehicle Act.

This summer, lineups at Fulford and Vesuvius have each stretched back for over ONE-HALF MILE, creating unsafe traffic impediments from the one-lane traffic they create.

It is easy to imagine what a fire truck or ambulance meeting a fully blocked off road due to ferry traffic unloading in one lane and parked cars in the other would look like.

In BC any impediment to traffic flow on a highway, which results in a one-lane situation requires two flaggers to safely direct traffic around the impediment. Given however the nature of BC Ferries customers parking on the highways, the situation is abysmally unsafe.

It is with that in mind that with this letter I am putting the recipients of this letter on notice that should any traffic accidents, injuries, deaths occur at either location, directly or indirectly, ALL parties will be held liable for damages due to their participation in their refusal, as public servants and/or elected officials, to enforce the traffic laws of British Columbia, having been given sufficient notice of their responsibility and liability as public officials.

I might add that the solutions to getting BC Ferries customers off the highways is not up to the residents of Salt Spring Island, or the thousands of tourists who visit here every year. Fill in more of Fulford Harbour, put on another, or larger ferry at Vesuvius….but get the parking off the highway.

The responsibility to do so lies with enforcement by the government of the corporation involved.

The solutions to this issue are decades past their best before date. Show us what leadership WITHOUT excuses looks like in 2018.

Thank you for your attention to this issue, and I look forward to all of your responses.

Best regards,

Eric Booth

Salt Spring Island, B.C.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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