With much of the debate over the Trans Mountain project focused on pipeline safety, one group is warning about the increased oil tanker traffic the project will bring.
Brian Gunn from Concerned Professional Engineers says he’s not against pipelines, but he’s worried about a greater chance of a collision between a tanker and the Second Narrows Bridge.
He says that the project will see the number of oil tankers passing through the Burrard Inlet go from five to 34 each month.
“Thirty-four a month means that there’s three to four days a month where you’re going to have two a day, so you’re risking collisions within the harbour itself.”
The group published an open letter to premier Christy Clark this week.
“If that collision were to happen and we hit the bridge, the force would be something like five times that, six times that of the ‘Japan Erica’… that would take that tower right off the foundation and then it could strike the bottom chord members of that bridge and take them out. So it just has to take part of the chord out, and the bridge would collapse,” Gunn says.
The CPE is calling on the B.C. government to do a risk assessment of tanker traffic.