Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Flood woes continue in parts of BC

Flood woes continue in parts of BC

David Campbell, head of the B.C. River Forecast Centre, said an extended period of dry weather is expected across the province next week.

"For now, the rivers are going down and we're getting a little bit of relief", Grand Forks Fire Department chief Dale Heriot said.

Many of B.C.'s floods have washed out major roads and some highways, leaving Ministry of Transportation engineering crews scrambling to fix major transit routes.

Chris Marsh, emergency operations centre director and program manager for the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary, said Thursday that up to 50 millimetres of rain hammered some areas of the region, causing rivers to rise significantly.

The town has also ordered all residents to turn off their sump pumps and that the "act of directing basement flood or ground water directly into the town's sewer system, through the use of sump pumps or other infrastructure, stop immediately", as water being drained into the sewer system in current conditions is overwhelming pump infrastructure.

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Also closed in both directions Friday was Highway 8 about 10 kilometres west of Merritt at 10 Mile Bridge because of a rapid increase in flood waters.

Snowpack levels were more than double the average in the district, it said.

The Salmon River near Falkland and Salmon Arm is the subject of a flood warning as well. "We're going to have a couple of weeks of very, very hard times along the waterways of British Columbia", Horgan said at the World Rugby Women's Sevens game in Langford, B.C., on Saturday.

The temperature over the past three weeks has been about five degrees above normal in the Interior, and that could mean more trouble for parts of southeast B.C., Campbell said on a conference call from Victoria.

"This is definitely going to be in the range of a one-in-200-year flood", said Frances Maika, spokeswoman for the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary, where most of the orders have been issued.

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For the latest updates check the EmergencyInfoBC flooding webpage.

- 23 local states of emergency have been declared.

Some of the worst flooding in B.C.is in the Kootenay Boundary region where water overwhelmed an RV park east of Rock Creek on Thursday. On Friday the water started to recede and an evacuation order for 54 homes was lifted in the afternoon.

"Even if temperatures cool, and we get additional rain, that can also aggravate soil and dikes that may be saturated", he said, adding that the province will roll out dike patrols starting next week.

An evacuation order has been rescinded for all homes in Okanagan Falls along Shuttleworth Creek.

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Evacuation alerts remain in effect for properties in the Lower Nicola Mobile Home Park and Marshall Road.

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