Flood, avalanche risks remain elevated throughout B.C.’s South Coast

Squamish River in British Columbia

The flood and avalanche risks remain elevated throughout British Columbia’s South Coast, where atmospheric rivers continue to bring heavy rains along with unseasonably warm temperatures.

B.C.’s River Forecast Centre is maintaining a flood warning for the Squamish River, saying flows had reached somewhere between a two- and five-year return period at a gauge near Brackendale, north of the Squamish town centre.

The warning issued late Monday afternoon also covers tributaries, including the Cheakamus River, which was “expected to exceed bank-full flow.”

Lower-level flood watches are in effect across the rest of the province’s South Coast, spanning all of Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast, the North Shore mountains, and parts of the Fraser Valley, including the Sumas River.

The latest Avalanche Canada forecast, meanwhile, shows the danger rating remains “high” throughout the south Chilcotin and Pacific mountain ranges, including alpine areas around Squamish, Whistler, Pemberton and Garibaldi Provincial Park.

The avalanche risk is also ranked as “high” in northwestern B.C., including mountains surrounding the communities of Prince Rupert, Terrace and Kitimat.

A bulletin from the forecaster says heavy rains have saturated and weakened the upper snowpack, and conditions weren’t expected to improve today.

Environment Canada says the latest heavy rains were expected to ease to showers this morning, but the wet weather will continue over the next few days.


Feature image by iStock.com/alamourus

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