Repairs on the Sumas Dike were about 80 per cent complete as of Tuesday, Nov. 23. (Photo: City of Abbotsford)

Repairs on the Sumas Dike were about 80 per cent complete as of Tuesday, Nov. 23. (Photo: City of Abbotsford)

Dike repairs in Abbotsford are 80 per cent complete, says mayor

City prepares for next major weather system, expected to move in Wednesday

Mayor Henry Braun says the main dike repairs in Abbotsford are about 80 per cent complete in preparation for the next heavy rainfall expected for the area.

Braun, speaking at the city’s daily press conference on Tuesday afternoon (Nov. 23), said there were four main areas that needed repair, making up less than one per cent of the diking system.

“At this time, all of our dikes have been inspected and damage assessed to the best of our ability … We expect another five feet of height to be added to the dike prior to the weather event anticipated for Thursday,” he said.

Braun said the repairs near Barrowtown Pump Station and Cole Road are complete.

He said additional crews will be moved to the erosion of the dike upstream of Atkinson Road once the main dike breach at No. 3 Road is complete.

“To help further prepare us, we are also fortifying the Barrowtown Pump Station through sandbagging and additional pumping,” Braun said.

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He said Canadian Armed Forces personnel are helping to clear culverts throughout Sumas Prairie and other areas of the city.

They are also assisting with sandbagging in Clayburn Village, which was also heavily hit with flooding.

Braun said the city is also assessing slope stability in the Glen, Sumas and Eagle mountain residential areas.

He said assessments have been completed of 21 accessible bridges and 88 kilometres of road. A total of 357 culverts will be inspected.

“All of these efforts are being done to support the community through the next weather events. And I am hopeful that this will put us in the best position to manage the rain that will come.”

Environment Canada is predicting another 40 to 80 millimetres of rain from Wednesday night to Friday morning.

Braun said he and MLAs Pam Alexis (Abbotsford-Mission) and Ian Paton (Delta South) met earlier Tuesday with B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham.

They toured some oft the hardest-hit areas and discussed support for farmers.

“There is a lot of work that still needs to be done, and we are committed to continuing to work together with senior levels of government to ensure Abbotsford farmers have as much assistance as possible,” Braun said.

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