Unknown if City of Vernon irrigation caused land slide

Earth moved on Okanagan Avenue between Longacre Drive and Fulton Road Nov. 6

The City of Vernon can’t confirm what role, if any, its spray irrigation program played in a land slide.

Mud slid on to Okanagan Avenue, between Longacre Drive and Fulton Road, Nov. 6.

“There’s a lot of water coming off the hillside and whether it’s spray irrigation or not, has not been determined,” Shirley Koenig, operation services manager, told council Monday.

The city uses treated waste water to irrigate the hillsides above Okanagan Avenue and to dispose of the city’s effluent.

Koenig says previous studies of the area have indicated no impact from spray irrigation.

“My understanding is there’s always been high ground water in the area.”

A review of the Nov. 6 incident states that the slide and road damage were caused by high groundwater from the lands above insufficient bank stability on the low side of Okanagan Avenue.

That portion of Okanagan Avenue will be closed to traffic until Nov. 23.

Look for more in Wednesday’s Morning Star.