RDKB News Release: All evacuation alerts lifted for the Boundary


Trail, BC

June 9, 2020

9:30 a.m. PT

All evacuation alerts lifted for the Boundary


– Flood protection will be gradually removed over the coming days and weeks; residents are advised to keep sandbags in place until the end of freshet.


View on the RDKB emergency website: emergency.rdkb.com


The RDKB Emergency Operations Centre has rescinded an evacuation alert for 1136 properties affecting about 2200 people in the Boundary from Carmi on the West Kettle River to Christina Lake. This means no properties in the region are on evacuation alert or order due to the 2020 freshet.


The BC River Forecast Centre (BCRFC) lifted its High Streamflow Advisory for the region on June 8, and Environment Canada forecasted continued cool weather for the coming week. Both of these events mean the threat of flooding has diminished enough to make the evacuation alerts unnecessary.


The June 1 BCRFC Snow Survey and Water Supply Bulletin shows the Boundary snowpack is at 211 per cent of normal, but this percentage is relative to the amount of snow normally left in June each spring, and reflects data from only two of four snow sampling sites that report information to the BCRFC this late in the season. Most snow in the Boundary has now melted.


“The high numbers connected to our snowpack don’t tell the whole story. There are two sites, Big White and Grano Creek, which still show snow, but across the Boundary we are starting to see most sites melted out. Our main risk factors in this freshet are what they’ve always been – how warm it gets and how fast, and how much warm rain we get at any one time, especially on top of that melting snow,” said Mark Stephens, EOC Director.


The RDKB and the City of Grand Forks will gradually start removing Tiger dams and earthen berms in stages in the Grand Forks area, beginning with flood protection in front of downtown businesses.


“This is great news that our river levels are dropping and that our flood risk is reducing. But it doesn’t mean anyone should rush out to remove their sandbags yet. The 2020 freshet is still going on and we know that if we did get extreme amounts of rain, that could raise the flood risk again,” said Stephens.


The RDKB continues to monitor all creeks and rivers and track BC River Forecast Centre and Environment Canada weather information. The RDKB Emergency Operations Centre is activated to Level 2 and is prepared for any ongoing emergency response that may be required.


The RDKB warns everyone to stay away from the edges of watercourses and report any erosion to the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456.


The RDKB will continue to update the public as new information is available.

Photo caption: The RDKB and the City of Grand Forks will gradually start removing flood protection works in stages in the Grand Forks area now that river levels are dropping. Residents are advised to keep sandbags in place in case a change in weather causes rivers to rise again before the end of the freshet. (Photo courtesy of Red Dragon Consulting)