A large pothole on Highway 97 near Armstrong is blamed for several blown tires on Dec. 22. (Nichole Fleming/Facebook)

A large pothole on Highway 97 near Armstrong is blamed for several blown tires on Dec. 22. (Nichole Fleming/Facebook)

Pothole wreaks havoc on Highway 97 near Armstrong

Patching underway, lane closure and warnings issued by maintenance contractor

At least six cars fell victim to a large pothole in a merging lane on Highway 97 near Armstrong this weekend.

AIM Roads, the highway maintenance contractor, issued a notice on Dec. 23 urging motorists to use caution on Highway 97 between Crystal Waters Road south of Vernon and Enderby.

AIM stated its crews are out marking and patching potholes, however the potholes won’t be fully repaired until Friday after the Christmas holiday when a private contractor is available and asphalt plants reopen.

Read More: Fundraiser started for tow truck driver injured near Malakwa

Read More: Indigenous students at Okanagan College receive awards in support of their studies

The pothole problem is so severe that the northbound fast lane of Highway 97 has also been closed in the vicinity of Bailey Road south of Vernon.

The work on the potholes came too late for Amber Kimberly of Enderby and at least five other motorists whose tires were damaged by a pothole in the merge lane as they headed north out of Armstrong.

Kimberly said she joined a line of other cars along the shoulder of Highway 97 at around 7 p.m. on Dec. 22 after both passenger-side tires on her car were blown out from hitting the pothole. She said two of the cars had multiple tires blown and the rest had one tire damaged.

“No one was slowing down around us and it was dark, I was more worried about my kids than my car,” Kimberly said.

Read More: Flipping flapjacks for Okanagan’s less fortunate

Read More: UBC study publishes conclusions on rural healthcare challenges

She added that when called, the highway maintenance crew arrived quickly and patched the pothole, but there was no traffic control from either AIM or the police directing people to avoid the pothole.

With her car out of service until the tires can be repaired, and the cost of a rental not covered by ICBC, Kimberly said this has created a great inconvenience and cost for her family leading up to Christmas.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Salmon Arm Observer’s annual food drive is underway. For donations of one or two bags of non-perishable items, donors receive a gift certificate from one of several participating local merchants. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Salmon Arm merchants, Observer team up for food drive

Gift cards and certificates available for donations of non-perishable items

Emergency crews respond to crash just before midnight on Trans-Canada Highway east of Salmon Arm. (File photo)
Two pick-up trucks collide head-on on Trans-Canada Highway near Salmon Arm

Police report drivers survive crash late on Nov. 29, taken to hospital

Okanagan College students Michael Ochoa and Tallin Gregoire, both members of the Okanagan Indian Band, raised the Okanagan Nation Alliance flag on July 16, 2019,  outside the Vernon campus. (Karissa Gall photo)
First Nations reconciliation personified at Okanagan College

President Jim Hamilton’s foresight has opened post-secondary education doors for Okanagan College’s Indigenous students

“Am I racist?” signs like the one standing on the west end of Salmon Arm are part of an anti-racism campaign launched in November 2020 by B.C.’s Office of the Human Rights Commissioner. Hate crimes have been rising in B.C., particularly during the pandemic. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)
‘Am I racist?’ sign in Shuswap part of B.C. campaign to combat racism

As hate crimes rise, Office of Human Rights Commissioner would like citizens to examine inner biases

As of Nov. 30, online appointments for Interior Health’s blood lab at the top of Tank Hill will be done through the health authority’s new online booking tool www.labonlinebooking.ca/login. (File photo)
New system to launch for Salmon Arm lab services appointments

Interior Health transitioning to different online booking tool on Nov. 30

A bus shelter in White Rock is emblazoned with an ad from B.C.’s Office of the Human Rights Commissioner on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. (Black Press Media files)
VIDEO: ‘Am I racist?’ campaign asks British Columbians to confront their unconscious biases

Signs asking British Columbians to think about racial injustice have been put up across the province

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Christy Jordan-Fenton is the co-author of the book Fatty Legs, which has been mentioned amid the controversy of an Abbotsford school assignment on residential schools.
Fatty Legs co-author responds to Abbotsford class assignment on residential schools

Children’s book mentioned amid controversy at W. A. Fraser Middle School

Kootenay East MLA Tom Shypitka takes over as energy and mines critic for the B.C. Liberal opposition. Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick (right) moves from health critic to assistant deputy speaker. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals pick critics to take on Horgan’s NDP majority

Interim leader Shirley Bond takes seniors, long-term care

An impaired driver was found responsible for a crash on Highway 97 near Seacrest Hill in Oliver Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020 in Oliver. (Black Press file photo)
Impaired driver rolls vehicle in violent crash near Oliver

Vehicle crashed through a fence, tree and telephone line

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland listens to a question from a reporter on the phone during a news conference in Ottawa, Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Spending too little worse than spending too much, Freeland says as Canada’s deficit tops $381B

‘The risk of providing too little support now outweighs that of providing too much’

Still from a video surveillance camera of a man alleged to have stolen from several people at knife-point in Chilliwack (Rosedale) early on Nov. 28, 2020. (Facebook)
B.C. man defends his family against intruder, saves neighbour while wielding hockey stick

RCMP looking for footage that captures violent crime spree in Chilliwack

Good Samaritan Mountainview Village located at 1540 KLO Road in Kelowna. (Good Samaritan Society)
Outbreak declared at Kelowna long-term care home

Two cases announced, including the first case of the virus among care home residents in Interior Health

Jim Neufeld, 55, was last seen leaving his home in Penticton Jan. 21, 2009. (RCMP photo)
Human remains found off U.S. coast in 2009 identified as Penticton man

Jim Neufeld, 55, was last seen leaving his home in Penticton Jan. 21, 2009

Most Read