Wet weather in forecast raises landslide, flood risk

Another wet weather cycle is bearing down on southern B.C., prompting officials to warn of more floods, mudslides and travel interruptions.

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An RCMP office surveys the Greenslide slide in early May, 2017. Photo: Revelstoke RCMP

The B.C. transportation and infrastructure ministry has sent out a special warning about more precipitation in the forecast, which could lead to more floods and landslides in the region. Read their May 10 advisory here:

Inclement weather is expected in the Central and Southeast regions of British Columbia over the next two days, and more flooding is anticipated with the potential for landslides.

The province is recommending that homeowners, farmers and business owners take the appropriate steps to protect their properties and assets.

Due to the heavy rainfall and snowmelt, soils at mid and upper elevations are highly saturated which increases the risk of landslides. Residents of potentially affected areas should familiarize themselves with landslide warning signs and safety tips.

All residents of the Central and Southeast regions of the province are reminded to stay as far away from flood waters as possible and exercise extreme caution when driving. Drivers should go to DriveBC.ca for up-to-date information on road conditions and closures.

Livestock owners are strongly encouraged to review their emergency livestock relocation plans and begin preparing for higher waters.

Environment Canada is expecting temperatures to hold steady with increasing cloudiness through the day today. However, severe thunderstorms with strong southerly winds are expected on Thursday throughout the Central and Southeast regions, resulting in up to 25 millimetres of rain. Another 10 millimetres to 15 millimetres of showers are expected Friday with drier conditions and possible snowfall on Saturday.

Landslide Preparedness:

Depending on the severity of a landslide, you and your family should be prepared to be on your own for several days. Be sure to have an emergency plan and kit, including enough food and water to last for at minimum 72 hours.

Key warning signs for a potential landslide may include:

* Abnormally dirty water.

* Accumulation of large logs or debris.

* Sudden changes in stream flow or volume.

* Changes in water from clear to dirty.

* Rapid accumulation of sediment along flat creek sections.

* Falling rocks, boulders or sliding soil may indicate a larger landslide.

If you hear a faint rumbling sound that increases in volume or unsual sounds such as trees cracking or boulders knocking together, leave the area immediately. Once you have reached safety, call 1 800 663-3456 to report the situation. If you are caught in a landslide with no option to evacuate, curl in a tight ball and protect your head and neck.

Learn more

For information on flood conditions and evacuation orders, visit Emergency Info BC: https://www.emergencyinfobc.gov.bc.ca/
For information on flood preparedness including sandbagging: http://ow.ly/OplT30bBYyI
For landslide tips: http://ow.ly/2kN530bAfMr
For protecting your home and property in case of a landslide: http://ow.ly/Rb1130bAfL1
Landslide factsheet: http://ow.ly/Fiwx30bAfWt
For information on local road closures: https://www.tranbc.ca/southern-interior-flood-recovery-travel-advisories/
For local driving conditions: http://www.drivebc.ca/
Emergency preparedness tips for agriculture: http://ow.ly/2R0D30bC1s2
Disaster Financial Assistance: http://ow.ly/p20f30bC1xw

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