Courtesy of the Government of BC:
As flood waters continue to rise throughout the province, the Government of British Columbia is assisting local governments and First Nations communities, as needed.
Residents of the B.C. Interior are already experiencing flooding. Emergency Management BC, the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure are working together with municipalities and regional districts to minimize damage and keep people safe.
“We’re hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst, by supporting communities to prepare for and hopefully prevent the same kind of flooding that we witnessed last year,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General for British Columbia.
Farnworth noted that a high snowpack, coupled with warming temperatures, could lead to unusual flooding. “It is critical that those affected listen to their local authorities, and do everything in their power to protect themselves.”
Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness, said that the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre in Saanich and three Provincial Regional Operations Centres in Kamloops, Prince George and Nelson, have already been activated. “The Province is working with local governments to help protect our communities, and we urge all British Columbians to develop a household plan and build their own emergency kit,” said Rice.
Emergency Management BC is assisting local governments to respond to flooding in many areas of the province. The Province has:
Activated the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre (PECC) on the Saanich Peninsula. The aim is to co-ordinate flood response efforts throughout the province.
Activated the Provincial Regional Emergency Operations Centres (PREOC) in Kamloops (continually since April 11), in Prince George, and periodically in Nelson, to provide assistance to local governments in the Central Interior, Northeast and Southeast.
Deployed almost two million sandbags to local governments to protect homes and public infrastructure.
Provided a total of six sandbag machines to Cache Creek, Oliver, Vernon, Willowbrook and Kelowna (two).
Currently deployed 140 BC Wildfire Service firefighters to Kelowna and Oliver to assist with sandbagging. Last week, firefighters were deployed to Penticton and the Nooaitch Indian Band near Merritt.
Shipped 1.2 kilometres of gabions and 9.8 kilometres of tiger dams to the Okanagan.
The River Forecast Centre and regional operations are providing water flow expertise, as well as dam safety officers, geotechnical specialists and engineers in affected areas.
Rice encourages people to use the links below to become better prepared.
For information on flood-related evacuation alerts and orders, visit: www.emergencyinfobc.gov.bc.ca or follow on Twitter: www.twitter.com/EmergencyInfoBC
PreparedBC is British Columbia's one-stop shop for disaster readiness information. For tips on how to prepare an emergency plan and what to include in an emergency kit, visit PreparedBC: www.gov.bc.ca/PreparedBC
Flood prevention tips can be found here: http://ow.ly/E2JV30bttgr
The PreparedBC Flood Information for Homeowners and Home Buyers guide: http://ow.ly/t4lg30bttjr
River Forecast Centre link: http://bcrfc.env.gov.bc.ca/
Floodwaters can quickly wash out roads and bridges. Be prepared and plan an alternative route. For the latest road conditions, visit: www.drivebc.ca