A routine Sunday drive home from Port Alberni to Macoah could have turned tragic, were it not for two men who remained at the site of a rock fall that left an enormous boulder blocking a lane of Highway 4 near the Taylor Rest Area.
Robyn Rea was traveling westbound on Highway 4 along Taylor Flats at the west end of Sproat Lake when she noticed an oncoming vehicle flash its lights at her.
“First I checked to make sure my high beams were off then I prepared for whatever could be up the road,” said Rea.
It was around 5 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 8 when Rea was nearing the Taylor Rest Stop.
“It was getting dark, foggy and raining hard so I adjusted my driving accordingly,” Rea told Ha-Shilth-Sa.
After rounding a couple more corners, Rea spotted a pick-up truck ahead, parked on the center line.
“Then I saw the boulder and rocky debris all over the road,” she recalled.
The boulder was in the westbound lane and would have been difficult to see in the waning light.
“After I took some pictures and drove around the boulder I stopped at the pickup truck and talked to the two fellows,” said Rea.
The men assured her that they would remain at the site until road crews came to clear the roadway.
The men told Rea that there were three large boulders on the road. One was behind the pickup truck and another landed off of the road.
“If it were not for the guys in the pickup, I may have hit it…they probably saved a lot of people,” said Rea.
Crews arrived later that evening and quickly cleared the boulders and debris.
Ha-Shilth-Sa reached out to the BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, but they didn’t respond by deadline.