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Vancouver storm: SkyTrain line briefly closed by ice

TransLink says the Expo Line SkyTrain has resumed operations between Waterfront and Columbia stations after bad weather caused the line to close earlier in the afternoon.

The transit provider had warned ahead of the winter storm that riders should be prepared for significant delays. In an update Friday afternoon, TransLink said service on the Expo line had been suspended. The Millennium and Canada lines were also experiencing delays.

TransLink said bus bridges are in effect between Columbia and King George stations, as well as between Joyce and Metrotown stations.

The Millennium Line did not run between Lougheed and Burquitlam stations, and the Canada Line had no service between Bridgeport and Richmond-Brighouse stations, or between Templeton and YVR airport, the agency said.

An airport shuttle operated between Templeton station and the airport, according to TransLink.

Shortly after 2 p.m., the agency tweeted that service to the airport had resumed, but trains to Richmond-Brighouse were still not running.

The transit provider blamed the delays and stoppages on “ice buildup” on the SkyTrain guideways.

“We are doing everything we can to resume service as quickly as possible, but our strong advice to customers is to avoid travel at this time,” he said in a statement.

TransLink said de-icing trains were running through the system and bus operator Coast Mountain Bus Company was rerouting buses to help those affected by SkyTrain disruptions.

On Thursday, as it prepared for the storm, TransLink said it activated its snow plan and brought in additional personnel.

Metro Vancouver was under a winter storm warning on Friday as heavy snowfall was expected to give way to freezing rain and then heavy rain.

Environment Canada warned storm drains clogged with ice and melting snow made localized flooding “likely” as temperatures warmed Friday night and Saturday.

The storm caused the closure of the Port Mann and Alex Fraser bridges due to concerns about ice bombs falling on vehicles.

The weather has also prolonged travel issues at YVR, with 146 flights canceled Friday morning and more cancellations expected throughout the day.

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