Regional district floats despite flooding

The rollercoaster of turbulent weather will soon lead to substantial clean up, officials say

Talk of flooding and natural disaster lead the conversation as the Regional District of the North Okanagan met Wednesday. (Jennifer Smith/Morning Star)

The rollercoaster of turbulent weather will soon lead to substantial clean up, officials say.

Talk of flooding and natural disaster lead the conversation as the Regional District of the North Okanagan (RDNO) met Wednesday.

“The most topical right now is state of the region in terms of flooding, lake levels, and river levels,” said David Sewell, RDNO chief administrative officer.

The district has had a number of incidents over the past few months, including everything from landslides to floods and forest fires.

“That’s kind of the nature of this time of year,” Sewell said. “I was a little surprised about floods and forest fires in the same day, but sometimes that happens.”

With the turbulent weather, the RDNO has been operating at a mobile emergency operations centre (EOC) level one.

“Right now we’ll continue monitoring,” Sewell said. “Things seem to be reasonably stable, but we’ll wait until the forecast.”

Creighton Creek has also been experiencing flooding concerns.

“Every year, Creighton Creek floods,” said Rick Fairbairn, electoral area D representative. “Every year we’ve had problems to get it dredged. When this EOC activated, we took the opportunity to get the excavators in there and actually dredge a lot of the area that needs dredging. So some good came out of this. Otherwise, the industrial park in Lumby was going to be underwater.”

As the flooding occurred in electoral area D, a fire evacuation notice was handed out in rural Lumby at the end of May.

“Here we are helping with the flooding in electoral area D,” Fairbairn said. “We go home and there’s a fire above the farm and I was actually put on an evacuation alert at 10:30 p.m. It was a living experience, to actually go through that. Fortunately, they handed us the alert and in the morning they rescinded it.”

There are also reports of a recent slide at Silver Star Mountain Resort.

“It didn’t affect people, but there was a significant slide up at Silver Star,” said Bob Fleming, of BX-Swan Lake and chairperson of RDNO.

According to Sewell, there was another slide at Silver Star.

“We are pretty soon going to all be faced with clean up,” said Catherine Lord, RDNO Vernon director. “And this is going to be huge.”