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Posted: June 24, 2013

Regional update – 2013 Flood

Monday, June 24 – 7 p.m.

Wasa – A Forestry Unit crew was diverted to Wasa today as the lake levels started rising quickly. An additional 7,000 sandbags are en route to the Community Hall and the automatic sandbagger has been deployed to assist with filling sandbags. Anyone needing assistance with sandbagging of their home can call 250-919-2776. The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) has requested a shipment of Red Cross clean up kits for this area as well. Monitoring continues on an old roadbed at Cameron Pond where there is some slumping occurring. The Kootenay River has dropped again today, and the flap gate at Cameron Pond is open and flowing this afternoon.

River Levels

ElkWestMorrisseyThe Elk River continued to recede from its peak on Friday (when it was flowing at about 1,000 cubic metres per second) and this afternoon was flowing at 437 cubic metres per second. This is still a one-in-five year flood level.

The Kootenay River has dropped down to a one-in-two year flood level today from its peak on the weekend, when it was flowing at a rate of 1,800 cubic metres per second.

A Look Around the Region

HosmerSandbaggingHosmer – 120 clean up kits from the Red Cross have been delivered to the Hosmer Community Centre (for use throughout the Valley) and will be available to the community tomorrow. Dike inspections showed no change. Sandbags stockpiled in Hosmer have been diverted to Wasa where water levels are rising sharply today; however we have sand and sandbags available should conditions change again in Hosmer. Interior Health information was emailed to the community and posted at the Community Centre regarding proper steps to “shock” wells and get water tested.

Area A – The State of Local Emergency remains in effect for Electoral Area A. The Emergency Social Services (ESS) Reception Centre that had been set up at the Fernie Curling Club has been closed as all evacuation orders have been lifted. Ten ESS referral extensions have been granted.

FernieFloodingFernie – a State of Local Emergency remains in effect. The storm water system is handling the water at this time. All dikes are holding. All city parks remain closed as city staff work to determine the full extent of the damage. The parks are expected to remain closed for at least the balance of the week.

West Fernie – West Fernie Dike is holding stable and drainage has returned to normal. Interior Health Information was emailed to the community and posted at the Community Centre regarding proper steps to ‘shock’ wells and get water tested.

Cokato – Information will be delivered to the homes on Thompson Road regarding well testing / drinking water safety.

ElkfordFloodingElkford – The District of Elkford is maintaining the State of Local Emergency declared June 20. The Evacuation Alert remains in place. Residents are asked to stay away from the Elk River and Boivin Creek. Continued debris management will be conducted in Boivin Creek to ensure public safety; therefore, the Peace Park is closed until further notice. The dike/trail system along the Elk River was damaged during the flood. Dike assessments are being conducted with repair work to commence shortly. Residents are asked to stay away from this area, as portions of the dike/trail are missing, and many spots have been impacted by undercutting.

Sparwood – District staff are assessing trails and parks for damage. Efforts are also underway to replace a water line that was damaged in the flooding.

Elko Dam – The dam alert has been cancelled. BC Hydro personnel remain on site and will continue 24-hour surveillance while water levels remain high.

Kimberley – Kimberley Creek is almost totally back in its channel. Due to lower water levels, crews were able to access their water intake in the Mathew Creek area to assess damage and determine next steps. They will also now be focusing efforts on addressing the erosion that took place in Mark Creek last week.

Canal Flats – The situation in Canal Flats remains stable and no infrastructure is currently being affected.

DutchCreekDutch Creek – The Declaration of a State of Local Emergency remains in place. An evacuation alert for the HooDoos Resort Campground and neighbouring residences is still in effect. Heavy equipment continues to complete rip rap reinforcement along the banks of Dutch Creek and crews made good progress again today.

Fairmont Hot Springs – both Fairmont Creek and Cold Spring Creek remain within their channels though Emergency Program personnel noted higher water levels on both creeks today. Work continues on culvert maintenance near the Riverside Golf maintenance shed due to ongoing sedimentation. Other culverts are remaining clear at this time.

Weather Forecast – The weather forecast is called for continued rain through Tuesday across the region with unsettled conditions on Wednesday including a mix of sun and cloud and possible thundershowers. Strong winds are also possible for tomorrow.

Backcountry Safety Reminder –Extreme caution is advised if using backcountry roads as there are a number of reports of washouts. The Forest Service is requesting people not travel on back roads until the conditions are drier for safety reasons and to prevent rutting on the roads.

The latest:
 Disaster Financial Assistance approved by province

The RDEK made application to Emergency Management BC (EMBC) for Disaster Financial Assistance (DFA) for ‘Overland Flooding.’ The province has approved the Regional District of East Kootenay for DFA for all rural areas and municipalities with the RDEK. This means full-time residents can fill out claim forms and submit them for a portion of the cleanup costs related to the flooding that are not covered by insurance. The DFA program is provincial (not RDEK) and is only available to full-time residents (not seasonal). Applications for Disaster Financial Assistance are on EMBC’s web site at

Loree Duczek/RDEK

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