Road closures in Canada are cutting off all of Alaska’s land connections to the rest of the world.
According to Aurah Laundau with the Alaska Department of Transportation, the Haines Highway is closed in the Yukon. So is Top of the World highway, near Dawson City. Out of Skagway, the Klondike Highway is closed in British Columbia.
The three highways have been closed since early this morning. They’re the only channels into Alaska by road.
Haines and Skagway residents woke up to rain and temperatures in the mid-forties — but mild weather here is making highways further north impassable. Ice, freezing rain, snow, and fog are making the roads too dangerous to drive, according to Canada’s Highways Department.
Landau says the biggest impact will be for travelers who find themselves stranded. The Alaska Legislature is set to gavel in tomorrow in Juneau, and participants driving down from the Interior may be stuck on the way.
The highways are also essential for getting fresh food to places like Fairbanks, Landau says. If they remain closed a long time, access to fruits and vegetables would be affected.
Southeasterners have less to worry about — most of their produce is brought in by plane, she says.