Due to the British Columbia floods, an order for gas rationing in the Greater Vancouver Area has been implemented.

Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, better known as the Lower Mainland in British Columbia, has been hit with a lot of rain in the past two weeks. We can’t even get a chance to dry out!

Click the banner below for a post where I captured photos from Twitter that show some of the devastation the heavy rains and flooded rivers have caused.

Flooding in British Columbia

After work on Friday, November 19, 2021, I headed straight out from work to visit my horse, Cajun.

As I got closer to the farm where I board him, I passed a Super Save Gas and cars were lining up down the street.

Wow!

I looked at the price to see if there was a gas war going on, and the price was $1.58 a liter.

Now I know Americans complain about the high price of gas. 5 gallons to a liter. Do the math to see how much we pay for gas in Canada!

This is why Canadians who live close enough to the US border head south to buy gas. That is when the border isn’t closed off to non-essential travel!

I mentioned to the ladies at the farm about the huge line up to buy gas, and they said gas rationing has been implemented in the Greater Vancouver Area to conserve our gas supplies. A limit of 30 liters per car per fill up. So this is a first for me.

Was it a good decision? Drivers flocked to gas stations and some ran out of gas.

Exemptions to 30 liter limit

There are quite a few exemptions of vehicles that can fill ‘er up.

  • Emergency service vehicles (fire, police, ambulance and health care including urgent medical treatment)
  • Public transit vehicles
  • Commercial transport trucks – critical goods and services (food and beverage, health care, safety)
  • Refrigerated trucks
  • Potable water delivery/wastewater service
  • Grocery delivery
  • Road repair, maintenance and recovery vehicles/tow trucks
  • Military vehicles
  • Critical infrastructure, construction and repair vehicles
  • Home-care workers
  • Municipal services vehicles
  • First Nations government services vehicles
  • BC Ferries/Coast Guard/tugboats/marine emergency/pilot boats
  • Canada Post and other couriers/package delivery vehicles
  • Vehicles for the provision of critical government services
  • Airport authority vehicles and air travel
  • Waste disposal/recycling
  • BC Hydro, Fortis and other heavy-duty and light-duty utility vehicles
  • Telecommunication repair and installation vehicles
  • Fuel delivery trucks and boats
  • School buses
  • Taxis
  • Agricultural and farm-use vehicles, including vehicles supporting flood response
  • Veterinarians supporting flood response
  • Inter-city buses

Fueling up

I’d fueled up my car the previous weekend so when the gas rationing was announced on Friday I had a little over half a tank. Good thing. I wouldn’t want to be waiting in line at the pumps. A few days later I had less than half a tank, and it was back to normal at gas stations. Nobody pumping gas when I arrived. Had my choice of pumps!

I think most people have been good about following the 30 liter limit. The rationing was only expected to be in place for a couple of weeks until the damage to the pipeline, caused by the storms, could be repaired.

Due to more heavy rain this weekend from atmospheric river number two, and more heavy rain expected in two days thanks to atmospheric river number three, the repairs might be delayed. So gas rationing is still in effect until further notice.

Here’s the sign posted by the pump when I fueled up.

And as you can see, I was pretty good at keeping to my 30 liters. Sorry about that glare from the lights. It was past 6pm and dark outside.

Buy gas in Washington

In normal times, people who live close enough to the border drive down to Blaine or Bellingham in Washington to buy gas. Takes 10 minutes if fueling up in Blaine. Make it a couple of hours if driving down to Bellingham to buy gas and shop for groceries too.

Due to the pandemic, non essential traffic using the land border crossings has been closed between Canada and America since March, 2020.

In August, 2021, Canada opened the border for Americans to drive across as long as they can prove they have been vaccinated against Covid-19 and have negative test results and are registered on the ArriveCan app at least 72 hours in advance.

Yikes to all of that!

On November 8, 2021, America finally opened up its land borders to Canadians heading South. Great news for snowbirds heading for warmer climates for a few months.

Bad news for Canadians wanting to take day trips to buy gas and groceries. Add in the price of a PCR test that costs around $200, and it’s too expensive to head down for a few hours to buy gas and groceries. We’re staying put!

The Canadian government announced that on November 30 they’re dropping the PCR test for visits to the states for less than 72 hours. I expect we will see a big influx of Canadians heading south to buy cheaper gas and groceries this week!

Waiving the PCR requirements in flooded areas

With the flooding and gas rationing, the Canadian government announced on November 21, 2021, that it is waiving the PCR test for residents who need to cross into Washington to purchase gas and other essentials like groceries.

The following day, a senior who lives near the border drove down to Blaine to buy gas. On the return trip, the Canadian border agent slapped her with a $5700 fine for not having done the PCR test! Wow! https://www.cloverdalereporter.com/news/south-surrey-woman-who-went-to-u-s-to-buy-gas-hit-with-5700-fine/

Yup, our tax dollars at work. The right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing.

Fortunately, the Feds have promised to clear British Columbians’ fines for travelling without a PCR test. https://globalnews.ca/news/8394719/bc-travellers-fine-negative-pcr-test/

I’m not so sure fueling up at a gas station in Northwest Washington is all that good an idea anyway because they’re also being pummeled with the monsoon rains and flooding. Kind of tricky filling up at the 76 station!

Flooding on November 28

Today when I drove over to check on my horse, some of the nearby properties were flooded, due to overflowing ditches. Particularly the Christmas tree farm that had been quite busy yesterday with many cars in the parking lot.

Today their driveway is blocked off. You need a boat if you want to buy a Christmas tree there.

The farm where I keep my horse now has a few lakes, but fortunately on the opposite side of the street from where most of the flooding is happening. As long as the lake across the street, aka the cow pasture, doesn’t overflow on the road, they should be OK.

In the photo below I was standing at the back door of the barn looking out at the pasture. The water hadn’t come into the barn *yet* like it did two weeks ago.

The horses stayed in the barn today!

I uploaded a video of my drive today past the Christmas tree farm.

My heart goes out to all the people who have been devastated by the flooding. Lost lives, both human and animal, homes and livelihoods destroyed.

My thoughts are with everyone in Abbotsford, Merritt, Princeton, and other places affected by the severe flooding.

Posted by Cheryl @ The Lifestyle Digs on November 28, 2021.

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