Evacuations in northwest B.C., flood warnings, watches issued as rivers swell

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Rapid snow melt or heavy rains have prompted flood warnings, watches or high streamflow advisories in British Columbia from the central coast north to the Yukon boundary and along most of the eastern length of the province.

Evacuation orders and alerts have been issued by the Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine in the northwest, as rising waters of the Skeena River wash out roads and are threatening nearly 100 properties near Terrace in the communities of Old Remo and New Remo.

The River Forecast Centre has posted flood warnings for sections of the Skeena, Stikine and Tuya rivers while flood watches are in effect for several northwestern waterways, including sections or the Kispiox and Nass rivers.

High streamflow advisories cover the central coast and the Liard and Cottonwood rivers near the Yukon boundary as well as eastern B.C. from the Peace region to the Kootenays, the Fraser River from Quesnel to Hope and the Similkameen region along the U.S. border.

The forecast centre says heavy rain and rapid snowmelt have swollen rivers in northwestern B.C. and those waterways could continue to rise because more rain is expected through the weekend.

In eastern B.C., high streamflow advisories follow several days of record high temperatures but conditions are easing and forecasters say flooding is only likely if the latest hot spell ends with heavy rain.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 4, 2021.

The Canadian Press

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version said the Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine was in northeast B.C.

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