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3rd atmospheric river landing on already saturated soil and swollen rivers of Fraser Valley

Here’s a roundup of flood-related online resources for the Eastern Fraser Valley
Sandbagging near Townsend Park in Chilliwack on Nov. 29, 2021. (Mavis Hindy photo/Facebook)

The third atmospheric river event is landing on already saturated soil and swelling rivers across the flood-damaged region.

Environment Canada is calling for 80 to 100 millimetres of rainfall over the course of the storm through Tuesday and Wednesday across the Fraser Valley.

A Facebook group with more than 10,000 members FV Flood Help has different types of assistance being offered.

FVRD issued evacuation alerts for properties on Chilliwack Lake Road and Wilson Road on Nov. 28. An earlier evacuation alert from Nov. 26 was upgraded to an evacuation order on Nov. 29 for 12 properties on Laidlaw Road and McKay Road near Laidlaw, FVRD, Electoral Area B.

RELATED: Homes lost, road wiped out near Hope

An evacuation order was issued Monday (Nov. 29) afternoon for a handful of properties on the Chilliwack River. FVRD tweeted the link to the Alertable post regarding the properties on Osborne Road in Electoral Area E. The order was issued at 2:55 p.m. for Bell Acres.

RELATED: Evacuations in the CRV

FVRD emergency evacuations page has updated info at An Emergency Operations Centre phone line for the public is at 778-704-0400 to report flooding-related incidents. For resources available there is a separate 2021 Floods page with emergency information for Cities of Abbotsford, Chilliwack, and Mission, Districts of Hope, Kent, and Village of Harrison Hot Springs.

RELATED: Evacuations Monday between Chilliwack and Hope

The sandbagging in Chilliwack at Townsend Park and in Yarrow has been constant in preparation, and volunteers have been filling and delivering sandbags to those in need.

“Residents may experience localized flooding as a result of this third storm,” City of Chilliwack in its situation update of Monday afternoon.

City of Chilliwack’s online situation updates change daily as staff monitor everything from river levels to weather forecasts.

“River flows will not have much time to reduce between the rain events, and local rivers levels are expected to rise again as a result of the storm,” said the city update.

“The Vedder River is currently projected to rise to 600-700 m3/s. The surrounding dike is designed to approximately 1,350 m3/s. Low points on the Vedder Rotary Trail will likely sustain more damage. Please stay off the trails, as all trails are currently closed in Chilliwack.”

To help the sewer system deal with so much water and prevent backups, city officials are asking that all residents reduce their water use in things like laundry until Thursday (Dec. 2).

Pre-filled sandbags are available at Townsend Park and in Yarrow at the Masonite Door parking lot (Yarrow Central and No. 3 Road). Sand and bags are available for self-fill at the Yarrow sports field.

B.C. officials are recommending that people don’t travel if they don’t have to, but check or TranBC for updates on highways.

In Chilliwack some roads washed away in sections over were flooded, but still passable including areas of concern on: Chilliwack Mountain, Majuba Hill and Ryder Lake.

City crews worked through the weekend on flood watch, keeping drainage courses clear of debris, monitoring water levels in dikes and culverts, and ensuring pre-filled sandbags were available in multiple locations.

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Jennifer Feinberg

About the Author: Jennifer Feinberg

I have been a Chilliwack Progress reporter for 20+ years, covering the arts, city hall, as well as Indigenous, and climate change stories.
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