Evacuation alerts, orders in effect for parts of BC as long weekend kicks off - 660 NEWS
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Evacuation alerts, orders in effect for parts of BC as long weekend kicks off

Last Updated May 19, 2018 at 4:21 pm MDT

Water levels on the Fraser River in Langley on May 17, 2018 (Bruce Claggett, NEWS 1130 Photo)

LANGLEY (NEWS 1130) – Hundreds of homes and businesses in the unprotected flood plain along British Columbia’s lower Fraser River could be asked to evacuate in the coming days, as rapid melt from snowpack continues to raise water levels.

Approximately 260 properties in the areas of Northwest Langley and Glen Valley, B.C., as well as Brae Island and McMillan Island, are on evacuation alert.

Township of Langley officials say door-to-door evacuation orders could be issued in areas unprotected by dikes if readings at the Mission gauge reach 6.3 metres.

By early Saturday afternoon, water levels at the gauge were creeping toward 6.0 metres. The River Forecast Centre estimates they could reach 6.4 metres on Sunday and 6.57 metres on Monday.

Residents in the flood plain have been advised to have a plan in place, including arrangements to stay with family or friends and preparing emergency kits with clothing, medication and other necessities.

The River Forecast Centre says persistent warmer than normal temperatures across British Columbia for the past three weeks have led to a much earlier than normal runoff period for the Fraser River.

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Any evacuation orders will be hand-delivered by emergency responders, as well as shared on social media.

Dozens of homes in Hope are under an evacuation alert. Meantime, anumber of properties in Chilliwack, Barnston Island, Brae Island, Colony Farm, Deas Island, and other areas are also being affected.

Meantime, people around BC’s southern interior are getting some much-needed help from members of the Canadian Forces.

Around 140 military members are currently assisting with sandbagging around the Kootenay Boundary and Central Okanagan Regional Districts, which have already been faced with high water levels and record floods.

For anyone heading into the interior this long weekend, you’re urged to plan ahead if your trip involves passing through or ending up in one of the many communities faced with flooding.

The Kootenay Boundary Regional District is expected to provide an update on the flooding situation.