Rivers in the Boundary expected to reach highest levels since 1948
Forecasts for precipitation and warm temperatures combined with a rush of snowpack at high elevations will hasten snowmelt in the coming days forcing the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary to increase the number of Evacuation Orders in the Boundary region.
In a media release Wednesday, the RDKB said rivers in the Boundary at expected to reach highest level since 1948.
“Virtually all properties in the West Kettle River, Kettle River, Granby River, Christina Creek and Christina Lake floodplain within the Boundary region are now on evacuation alert,” the RDKB release said.
“This means about 1550 people have been asked to be ready to leave their homes at a moment’s notice.
“Sixty-six people (33 properties) have been ordered to leave their homes, and 56 people have lost road access in Brown Creek but are safe and sheltering in place.”
The RDKB said the City of Greenwood and properties adjacent to the Boundary Creek watershed are not included in the evacuation alert.
The 33 residents who have been ordered to evacuate their homes in and near Grand Forks were asked to do so because flooding along the Kettle River in the City of Grand Forks and Electoral Area D/Rural Grand Forks is a threat to their safety. A floodplain-wide evacuation alert is in place because water levels in creeks, rivers and lakes are expected to peak at record high levels the next 24 to 36 hours.
“As water levels peak, high water could cut off road access to many properties in the floodplain, even if individual homes may not be directly threatened by flooding,” the RDKB said.
“Without overland access, emergency responders will be unable to reach residents and residents will be unable to reach emergency services. Lack of access and egress is a threat to life and safety.”
An evacuation order means residents must leave the area immediately and report to the closest reception centre, which for Grand Forks area residents is the Grand Forks Curling Centre. If residents refuse to evacuate, they elect to forego any response by emergency services, including police, fire, ambulance or search and rescue.
An evacuation alert means residents need to pack and be ready to leave immediately if flood conditions worsen and an evacuation order is required for public safety. During an evacuation alert, residents need to gather essential items, move important belongings to higher locations in their homes, arrange to move pets or livestock, arrange for alternate accommodation for themselves and designate a meeting place for family or others away from the evacuation area.
All properties on evacuation alert are shown on the attached maps and lists, and all properties on evacuation alert and order are viewable at rdkb.com.