2018 Freshet situation update

Wednesday, April 18, 2018 - 10:44am

Current situation update

  • Isolated and localized flooding have been reported in the region. These incidents stem from groundwater seepage and low-level snowpack melt.
  • At this time freshet (spring runoff) is anticipated to be three to five weeks away.
    • Snowpack levels, temperatures and rainfall are all variable factors that can combine to elevate the risk of flooding from creeks.
    • While the snowpack is around 150 per cent right now, it is not known whether this will lead to flooding; how fast the snow melts based on temperature and rainfall are the influencing factors and unknown at this time.

  • The Central Okanagan Emergency Operations Centre, along with local governments, are closely monitoring the snowpack levels and liaising with the province to be prepared.
  • The Central Okanagan Regional Emergency Operation Centre is ready in the event of an emergency and will inform residents if conditions change.
  • Municipalities are undergoing mitigation work at the moment to prepare for spring runoff.
  • At this time, the lake is not a concern and it is not anticipated to be a risk this year. The lake level has been lowered 51 cm compared to the same time last year.

How residents can get prepared:

  • Property owners in flood prone and low-lying areas are responsible for protecting their own properties from possible flood damage. Equipping yourself with a flood plan and the tools needed in case of a flood can help prepare you.
  • Groundwater can be unpredictable. If property owners have historically experienced wet basements or seepage, they should prepare accordingly. Suggestions include installing a sump pump inside, below floor, or outside the structure, below basement level, at the location of seeping and/or making sure foundation drains (if present) are working.
  • Visit the Be Prepared pages for ways you can be ready in case of an emergency.
  • The Provincial Government has announced that Disaster Financial Assistance is now available for eligible British Columbians in the Central Interior, including the Central Okanagan, who may have been impacted by overland flooding or landslides from heavy rains that began on March 22, 2018. For more info, visit the B.C. Government's Disaster Financial Assistance webpage or call 1-888-257-4777 and email dfa@gov.bc.ca.

Who to call: