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River-watch continues in RDKB but no immediate flood threat

A photo from City Park in Grand Forks looking toward 2nd Street Bridge shows some normal riparian flooding visible in the foreground. — Submitted photo

The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary Wednesday said, thankfully, major rivers and tributaries across the Boundary received minimal amounts of precipitation and experienced cooler temperatures creating favorable freshet conditions so far this week.

The Special Weather Statement issued by Environment Canada, which called for major rain overnight, did not materialize but more unsettled weather is on its way.

Environment Canada predicts changeable weather conditions in our region through the May long weekend with potential for isolated to scattered showers and a risk of thundershowers, but this could change again in the next couple of days.

The RDKB continues to monitor all creeks and rivers and track BC River Forecast Centre models that show potential peak flows early next week through Monday and Tuesday.

The RDKB encourages residents to monitor low-lying areas for potential impacts from rising groundwater with some flooding as we move into the weekend. Residents with homes and businesses in low-lying areas prone to flooding are encouraged to monitor their properties and basements for potential impacts for groundwater in particular.

The High Streamflow Advisory issued by BC River Forecast Centre on May 6 is still remains in effect for the Boundary Region including the Kettle River, West Kettle River, Granby River and tributaries.

Sandbags are currently available for residents in the Westbridge and Beaverdell areas at the following locations free of charge:

  • Beaverdell behind the Fire Hall
  • Westbridge Hall

Residents must bring their own tools and equipment (shovels, transportation) and respect a physical distance of two metres (six feet) between workers as they fill sandbags.

Residents in the West Boundary who are most at risk of flooding should stay informed about local freshet conditions, and ensure they have considered plans for moving valuable items, livestock or other items to safe locations if required. The RDKB also asks everyone to stay well away from the edges of creeks and rivers as banks become unstable during high water.

For more information about how to safely sandbag during the COVID-19 pandemic, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-preparedness-response-recovery/emergency-response-and-recovery/flood-response

For more information about snow and river levels as well as how to prepare for the 2020 freshet, visit emergency.rdkb.com.

To register for the RDKB Emergency Alerting System go to https://ca.voyent-alert.com/vras/user-registration.html. The RDKB warns everyone to stay away from the edges of watercourses and report any erosion or flooding to the Emergency Operations Centre at 1-800-663-3456.

The RDKB will continue to update the public as new information is available.