Travel and fuel restrictions

Temporary restrictions on vehicle fuel (gas and diesel) purchases and travel in areas impacted by flooding are in place to ensure the movement of essential goods and services. 

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Last updated: December 6, 2021

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Restrictions on purchasing vehicle fuel

This content is a summary of the Emergency Program Act (EPA) Ministerial Order 465/2021 (PDF, 839KB). It is not legal advice and does not provide an interpretation of the law. In the event of any conflict or difference between this webpage and the order, the order is correct and legal and must be followed. 

Buying vehicle fuel at retail locations

B.C. is prioritizing gasoline and diesel for essential vehicles, while working to keep fuel available for people in B.C. Under the EPA, an order restricting the purchase of vehicle fuel in certain regions of the province is in place until December 14 at midnight. 

If you are not operating an essential vehicle, you are limited to purchasing 30 litres of fuel per trip to the gas station in these areas:

  • Lower Mainland (Vancouver to Hope)
  • Sea to Sky (Squamish to Pemberton)
  • Sunshine Coast
  • Gulf Islands
  • Vancouver Island

Price gouging and reselling

Under the order, retail gas stations and wholesale distributors are prohibited from profit margin price gouging and people are prohibited from reselling fuel. 

Essential vehicles can access cardlock gas stations 24 hours a day

Essential vehicles will not have a fuel limit. The majority of these vehicles will be able to access gas at commercial trucking gas stations (cardlock gas stations).

Under the order, essential vehicles are:

  • Emergency service vehicles (Fire, police, ambulance and health care including urgent medical treatment)
  • Public transit vehicles
  • Commercial transport trucks for critical goods and services (Food and beverage, health care, safety)
  • Refrigerated trucks
  • Potable water delivery and wastewater service
  • Grocery delivery
  • Road repair, maintenance and recovery vehicles and 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 and 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 and 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 and inter-city buses
  • Agricultural and farm-use vehicles including vehicles supporting flood response
  • Veterinarians supporting flood response

Print-ready posters

Download and print these posters for display at gas stations.


Restrictions on non-essential travel along severely damaged highways

This content is a summary of the Emergency Program Act (EPA) Ministerial Orders 450/2021 (PDF, 813KB)453/2021 (PDF, 627KB)459/2021 (PDF, 768KB)461/2021 (PDF, 761KB) and 495/2021 (PDF, 761KB). It is not legal advice and does not provide an interpretation of the law. In the event of any conflict or difference between this webpage and the order, the order is correct and legal and must be followed. 

Under the EPA, an order restricting non-essential travel along severely damaged highways is in place.

Highway Restricted highway segment  Essential reasons for travel

Highway 99

From the junction of Highway 99 and Lillooet River Road to the BC Hydro Seton Lake Campsite access in Lillooet

All essential purposes, as defined in the Ministerial Order.

Note: Vehicles under 14,500 kilograms only, unless authorized by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure district manager.

Highway 3

From the junction of Highway 5 and Highway 3 in Hope to the west entrance to Princeton from Highway 3

All essential purposes, as defined in the Ministerial Order.

Reasons you can't travel (non-essential trips)

  • Going to school (K-12 and post-secondary)
    • Does not apply to schools located on a restricted highway segment
  • Going to work
  • Vacations, weekend getaways and tourism
  • Visiting family or friends for social reasons
  • Casual shopping and other outings
  • Recreation activities
  • Hunting, unless you are an Indigenous person exercising your Aboriginal or treaty rights

Reasons allowed for travel (essential trips)

You can only travel on the highway segments for essential reasons:

  • Transporting essential goods and supplies, for example:
    • Food, water and other beverages
    • Fuel and gasoline
    • Health care goods, pharmaceuticals and medical supplies
    • Personal hygiene, sanitation and cleaning goods
  • Transporting livestock, agricultural or seafood products and supplies
  • Livestock producers, veterinarians and support workers travelling to provide care for animals
  • Responding to emergencies, including search and rescue operations
  • Evacuations for medical reasons and urgent medical treatment
  • Transporting essential personnel
  • Highway and infrastructure repair and maintenance
  • Commercially transporting goods and supplies
  • Returning to your principal residence (home),
    • Includes picking up a person who resides at your place of residence and is returning home
  • Returning a child to their principal residence
    • Includes families with shared custody
  • Moving your principal residence
  • Going to work as essential personnel
  • Picking up your child from a post-secondary institution to return home
  • Assisting vulnerable or at-risk people
  • Exercising an Aboriginal or treaty right as recognized and affirmed by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982
  • Media members travelling to report on the flooding and mudslides

Essential personnel

Direct-to-public health services

  • Health care services, including:
    • Acute care (hospitals)
    • Secondary care and long-term care
    • Coroners services
    • Health care providers working within and outside an acute care setting
    • Other health services including public health, detox facilities, safe-injection sites, COVID-19 testing, and emergency pre-hospitalization services
    • Other health services and caregivers (physicians, nurses, and pharmacists)
    • Health first responders (paramedics)

 Health service providers

  • Pharmacies
  • Medical supply and equipment manufacturers
  • Wholesale, distribution and stores, including medical safety supply stores

First responders

  • Police
  • Fire

Public safety

  • Commercial vehicle safety enforcement (CVSE)
  • Corrections and detainment facilities
  • Park rangers
  • Security and protective services,
  • Court services
  • Bylaw enforcement
  • Communications/dispatching support for first responders
  • Volunteers such as search-and-rescue (SAR) and public safety lifeline (PSLV)
  • Members of the Judiciary and related staff, employees of contracted service providers

Utilities

  • Electrical and gas operations
  • Repair and maintenance of technical infrastructure to support this work and compliance with health and public safety orders

Emergency support

  • Businesses that provide support to police and correctional services
  • Operations and services in support of the Canadian Armed Forces and Canadian Border Services Agency
  • Emergency management personnel at local, regional, and provincial levels

Suppliers

  • Businesses that ensure global continuity of supply of aggregates to support critical infrastructure repairs and emergency response requirements. For example:
    • Sandbags
    • Armour stone barriers
  • Equipment and uniform suppliers for first responders

Food sales and supply

People who work at:

  • Grocery stores
  • Convenience stores
  • Farmers’ markets
  • Other establishments engaged in the retail sale or provision of food, pet or livestock supply

Support services

  • Transport delivery of food, water and other beverages
  • People involved in the production of food and associated supplies

Fuel

  • Gas stations, diesel, propane and heating fuel providers including:
    • Providers of motor vehicle, aircraft and water/marine fuels
    • Providers of charging stations for electric vehicles

 Drinking and wastewater

  • Operations and employees needed to operate and maintain drinking water and wastewater/drainage infrastructure

Transportation

  • Services that facilitate the transportation of essential supplies, personnel, and services, including:
    • Port/waterfront operations
    • Road, air and rail operations