Canadian Forces soldiers sandbag near the river on Saturday. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)

VIDEO: Grand Forks shores up defences as floodwaters rise to peak levels

Canadian Forces, volunteers working to protect low-lying areas

Although flood levels are expected to peak in Grand Forks by Saturday night, officials with the emergency operations centre don’t believe water will rise as high as predicted earlier.

“Things are looking better today. They are expecting that the high water will be this afternoon or early evening but it doesn’t look to be as bad as what we were anticipating early on,” said assistant fire Chief Kevin McKinnon.

“We’re feeling somewhat comfortable that the dikes will hold.”

Close to 3,000 people still remain on evacuation order in the Kootenay-Boundary region, 1,600 of them in Grand Forks.

McKinnon said that some of the worst flooding was on Thursday night and into early Friday morning, when the Grandby River breached its banks and flooded low-lying areas, leaving nearly a foot of water.

The hardest hit area in Grand Forks remains the Ruckle neighbourhood, where at its worst, water came up above windows mid-way up the sides of houses.

The northern part of Ruckle was flooded when dikes breached Thursday night.

“There’s still a significant amount of water… though it’s gone down three to four feet,” said McKinnon on Saturday afternoon.

READ MORE: Residents sandbag Ruckle in advance of predicted Saturday flood

Before the peak hits, a group of 30-35 trained rapid damage assessors will be judging whether or not the homes evacuees have left behind are safe to reenter once the flood waters recede.

“Some of them are going to be quite bad. Are any of them going to be ‘can’t do anything, go bulldoze it?’ I don’t think so,” said McKinnon.

“But certainly there are a lot of places that are going to need a lot of work.”

But for now, the evacuees will have to watch over the homes from afar, either at the town’s evacuation centres or at the houses of friends and family who’ve taken them in.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Incumbents and acclaimed mayors win elections all across B.C.’s north

Fraser Lake saw their first female mayor elected

Mayoral results from across B.C.

Voters in 162 municipalities in B.C. set to elect mayor, council, school board and more

Every vote counts: 10 tightest races in B.C.’s municipal elections

Peachland saw their election decided by just one vote

Ocean “Blob” returns to North Coast of B.C.

A 2,000 kilometre patch of warm ocean water could signal a warm winter in Prince Rupert

‘Police are ready’ for legal pot, say Canadian chiefs

But Canadians won’t see major policing changes as pot becomes legal

B.C. sailor surprised by humpback whale playing under her boat

Jodi Klahm-Kozicki said the experience was ‘magical’ near Denman Island

Ovechkin has 4 points as Caps rough up Canucks 5-2

WATCH: Defending champs pick up impressive win in Vancouver

B.C. government moves to tighten resource industry regulations

New superintendent will oversee engineers, biologists, foresters

Election watchdog seeks digitally savvy specialists to zero in on threats

Move follows troublesome evidence of online Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election

More court before Dutch man charged in Amanda Todd case is extradited here

Appeals must be dealt with in Europe, before charges faced in B.C.

Crown says man guilty of B.C. girl’s 1978 murder based on alleged confession

Jury hears details of girl’s 1978 murder while Crown says man should be convicted of girl’s murder based on alleged confession.

BCHL alumni has NHL jersey retired by Anaheim Ducks

Paul Kariya played with the Penticton Vees from 1990-1992

Most Read