The Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) for District of Kootenay Boundary, British Columbia has issued evacuation orders to 1390 addresses, nearly 2800 residents, as of May 10th amid historic flooding.
Floodwaters in the areas have exceeded the recorded high levels set in 1948. Forecasts show the Granby River may be at peak flows, the West Kettle River may peak around midnight tonight, and impacts on the Kettle River are still not clear, other than levels will continue to rise overnight may endure beyond Friday.
Yesterday, director for the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary EOC, Chris Marsh said, “This very difficult flooding situation is going to continue through tomorrow and possibly longer. We have every resource at our disposal working to help with evacuations, emergency response and recovery for those people who are displaced.”
The EOC has coordinated delivery of sand and bags to 11 locations throughout the Boundary where volunteers are filling, and in many cases delivering, sandbags to businesses and residents. To date, over 120,000 sandbags have been deployed. Emergency Social Services are available for displaced residents at centres setup at the Grand Forks Curling Club and Midway Community Centre. All residents who have left their homes under the evacuation order are encouraged to register at one of the reception centres even if they already have arrangements for accommodation.
“Communities across the Boundary from Carmi to Christina Lake and up the Granby are affected by flooding right now. I am awed and impressed by my neighbours, friends, and residents of the Boundary,” said Roly Russell, RDKB board chair and director for Area D/Rural Grand Forks. “It’s inspiring to see how people come together in these times as a community so full of resilience and strength.”
The Granby River has spilled over its banks through downtown Grand Forks and has left several streets closed or with limited access. The Kettle River has also overflowed throughout its course from Carmi, through Beaverdell, Westbridge, and Midway, and is flooding parts of downtown Grand Forks along with other residential areas. DriveBC is currently recommending caution while driving through the area due to sections of road covered with water.
Top: Shops keep flood waters at bay with sandbags in downtown Grand Forks. Image Credit: District of Kootenay Boundary.