Dawson Civil didn’t hesitate to answer a call for help following the immense floods which took over the Interior and Lower Mainland of B.C. in mid-November.
“Upon request from Brentwood Enterprises Ltd, we mobilized our team within a few hours of the phone call to go out there and help them. Nobody on our team even blinked at the opportunity,” said Tylor Bryson, a Foreman with Dawson Civil.
The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations deemed Tank Hill, a section of Highway 1 in between Lytton and Spences Bridge, as “high risk” following last summer’s devastating forest fires. When the Thompson River flooded near the highway, it didn’t take long for a mudslide to wipe out the highway and the railway bridge that lived above it.
A Brentwood project, they enlisted the help of a few other companies for the supervision and construction of the bridge and the highway. Dawson Civil was one of the first crews on the scene on Nov. 14.
The remoteness of the location meant that crews were forced to stay in either Lillooet or Cache Creek, depending on where they were coming from, as the highway was closed. Crews worked around the clock for the first few weeks. While other crews were tasked with the removal of a metaphorical mountain of material, Dawson Civil made sure everyone stayed safe for the duration of the project. After that, they helped backfilling the foundation of the railway bridge with gravel.
“I’m really proud of our team for the way they helped out. It wasn’t our project, but our crew worked their tails off and put in some lengthy days and weeks,” said Bryson, who has led major projects before in his 21 years with Dawson Group. “It was all hands on deck from all the companies involved. It was a great collaborative effort to get this highway open.”
Once the bridge was built, the work for the highway began. A temporary railway crossing on the highway – which is less than ideal for all parties involved – is in place for the New Year, as traffic is set to return in January. A new bridge for the railway will be completed in the next few years.