It’s up to residents to protect their homes from flooding, but the North Okanagan Regional District has some limited resources to help.
For residents in the Regional District electoral areas, water that is threatening a home due to overflowing ditches can be reported to the Ministry of Transportation’s contractor through their 24 hour emergency number: 1-877-546-3799.
If the water is not a threat to the house, residents are asked to wait for natural dissipation of the water, as equipment and staff are limited.
People are also permitted to assist in clearing small blockages in the ditches with hand tools, such as shovels, but no machinery is allowed without Ministry of Transportation authority.
Any culverts or pipes beneath property access roads is not the responsibility of MoT, but the property owner.
“While the work associated with the protection of private property, such as digging ditches or sandbagging, is the responsibility of the property owner or occupants, residents who choose to protect their property with sand bags can access sand and bags at no cost, for self-filling, at several locations in the North Okanagan” says Alastair Crick, Manager of Protective Services for the Regional District of North Okanagan.
Sand and bags, with shovels for filling bags, are available at the following locations:
City of Enderby, RDNO Electoral Area F
Enderby Works Yard 2308 McGowan Ave., Enderby
RDNO Electoral areas B and C
BX Swan Lake Fire Dpt. 5764 Silver Star Rd.
Village of Lumby, RDNO Areas D and E
Across from Pat Duke Arena, Shields Ave., Lumby
District of Coldstream
Coldstream Works Yard – 8010 Aberdeen Road
Crick says the Government of Canada weather reporting station in North Vernon has reported that the area has had more than 200% of the precipitation of a 30 year average for February, roughly 270% of a 30 year average for March, and more than 280% of a 30 year average for April.
“As a result, the ground is saturated, and ditches and streams are running high and may be at risk of overflowing.”