High winds have forced BC Ferries to cancel afternoon and evening sailings between Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland, and modified sailing on the Horseshoe Bay to Langdale route.

The cancellations are to keep passengers and crew safe.

BC Ferries says it’s aware travellers rely on its vessels to reach their destinations, but says safety is of primary importance.

The corporation says it will resume service as soon as it’s safe to do so.

The following sailings were cancelled Sunday afternoon:

Tsawwassen (Vancouver) – Swartz Bay (Victoria)
-3:00 pm departing Tsawwassen
-5:00 pm departing Swartz Bay
-7:00 pm departing Tsawwassen
-7:00 pm departing Swartz Bay
-9:00 pm departing Tsawwassen
-9:00 pm departing Swartz Bay

Horseshoe Bay (Vancouver) – Departure Bay (Nanaimo)
-3:20 pm departing Departure Bay
-3:45 pm departing Horseshoe Bay
-5:55 pm departing Departure Bay
-6:35 pm departing Horseshoe Bay
-8:45 pm departing Departure Bay
-10:10 pm departing Horseshoe Bay

Tsawwassen (Vancouver) – Duke Point (Nanaimo)
-3:15 pm departing Tsawwassen
-3:15 pm departing Duke Point
-5:45 pm departing Tsawwassen
-5:45 pm departing Duke Point
-8:15 pm departing Tsawwassen
-8:15 pm departing Duke Point
-10:45 pm departing Tsawwassen
-10:45 pm departing Duke Point

The 5:30 pm sailing departing Horseshoe Bay and the 6:40 pm departing Langdale have been cancelled.

Here is the modified schedule between Horseshoe Bay (Vancouver) and Langdale (Sunshine Coast)

6:30 pm departing Horseshoe Bay
7:30 pm departing Langdale
8:40 pm departing Horseshoe Bay
9:35 pm departing Langdale
10:55 pm departing Horseshoe Bay

BC Ferries says customers holding reservations who have not yet checked in will be advised of the cancellation and their reservation fees will be automatically refunded.

Environment Canada issued a special weather statement today and says that as intense Pacific cold front crossed the region there would be winds gusting up to 70 kilometres per hour.

The strong southerly winds were forecast to shift to west or northwest winds during the afternoon and ease tonight as a ridge of high pressure builds over the region.