The swollen BX Creek takes out trails at the BX Ranch Park.

The swollen BX Creek takes out trails at the BX Ranch Park.

Flood watch continues

BX and Duteau creeks and Shuswap River among areas of concern

Despite a recent break in the rain, some local creeks and rivers continue to overflow their banks.

In the BX, East Vernon and Tillicum roads are closed at the BX Creek crossings due to high water.

The roads haven’t been washed out, but the creek is believed to have undermined sections of the pavement.

“That’s our concern, if we open it up, people may fall through,” said Rick Kovacvich, Argo Road Maintenance operations manager.

Therefore, for safety reasons, the crossings are closed until the situation can be properly assessed and fixed.

The waters in the Duteau Creek system, including its tributaries, also continued to rise earlier this week.

The banks of Bessette Creek in Lumby were spilling over, flooding parts of the local salmon trail and farmer’s fields.

Sandbagging started along the creek in several locations Monday, with the assistance of 10 forestry firefighters.

“They filled between 500 to 600 sand bags in the Lumby area, and set out several pallets of bags so local residents could fill for themselves,” said Gord Molendyk, information officer for the North Okanagan Emergency Operations Centre. “Four or five truck-loads of sand were also brought in and distributed around the village so residents of Lumby could have easy access to it so they can protect their properties.”

While most of the water levels have gone down, with showers forecast to continue today crews are monitoring water levels.

“We are asking everyone living near any of the creeks and rivers to continue to be vigilant as water levels could rise again quickly,” said Molendyk.

“The real concern right now is in the Duteau system,” he adds. “If a large amount of debris comes down the creek, this could cause problems with culverts and the sandbagging operations along the creek.”

An excavator is working along the creek removing problem debris.

Also in the Lumby area, as well as Enderby, the B.C. River Forecast Centre continues to maintain a flood watch for Shuswap River.

Flow on the Shuswap River in Lumby peaked Sunday and is expected to further decline.

But flows are expected to remain elevated at the Shuswap River in Enderby.

“Ashton Creek is still where it was last week,” said Molendyk of the rapidly flowing creek that has caused flooding damage on Enderby-Mabel Lake Road. “The volume of water actually made the creek wider.”

Enderby-Mabel Lake Road remains open to single-lane traffic as Argo crews continue to work in the area.

All residents are reminded to take extreme caution around waterways and report trees along banks that are at risk of causing damage to people, property or pets.

Boaters and those using area lake boat launches are advised to watch for floating debris that is entering the lake as a result of the runoff from creeks and water courses.

In addition to Tuesday’s showers, Environment Canada is forecasting more rain today, but then no more precipitation is expected until Sunday or Monday.