Conditions in B.C. areas currently experiencing flooding are expected to get worse, the province said Wednesday (May 3).
An information bulletin from the Ministry of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness said that hot weather in the coming days will accelerate snowmelt through Friday, when heavy rainfall and thundershowers are expected to start, lasting through Saturday.
“Based on forecasts from the River Forecast Centre, conditions in areas that are currently flooding, including Cache Creek and Okanagan Indian Band territory, are expected to deteriorate over the coming days,” it reads.
The ministry also warns of increased flooding in other areas, particularly the Central Interior and the Okanagan, Wednesday through Friday, with moderate flooding likely in Grand Forks.
“Into the weekend, significant flood hazard is expected throughout small and medium-sized watersheds in the Central Interior, Okanagan, Boundary and Southern Kootenays,” it reads.
Provincial officials are deploying sandbags and other assets to protect homes and public infrastructure in at-risk communities, including Grand Forks, Cache Creek and Okanagan Indian Band territory. Provincial watershed experts have also headed to areas of concern, holding regular co-ordination calls to assist communities.
The ministry urges people in affected regions to take precautions to ensure their personal safety, including developing a household plan, putting together emergency kits, connecting with neighbours and learning about the local government emergency response plan for their area.
While the River Forecast Centre is monitoring weather patterns and river conditions, the ministry is asking residents to monitor information from local municipalities and First Nations, because they have the most current information.
“Depending on the severity of the situation, an evacuation alert or order may be issued,” it reads. “People must follow the advice and direction of local authorities.”