Surrounded by lake water

Alanna Kelly

Bud Truswell has lived at his home at the mouth of Mission Creek since he was three-years-old but has never experienced a flood like the one today.

His home sits inside a circle of bladder dams and thousands of sandbags holding back 18 inches of water.

“I’ve never seen it as bad as this in all my time in the Okanagan and that’s been a lot of years,” said Truswell who's lived in the home since 1941.

He has six pumps set up on his property that takes 16 plus inches of water down to just 6 inches, every four hours.

At first, his family built the pumps and sandbags themselves but needed help.

“It became very apparent that we couldn’t keep up with it,” he said.

B.C. Wildfire Service workers helped set up the dam and sandbags which are now submerged underwater.

“We’ve got about two acres here and two-thirds of it is covered with water,” Truswell said.

The home is dry for now, and the biggest concern is the ground water.

“The only thing I am dealing with is the ground water coming up, not the lake water coming in,” he said. “It is going to be a long time for the lake to go down.”

Central Okanagan Emergency Operations Centre announced Sunday that residents should protect their homes up to 344.1 metres as fifty percent of the upper snowpack has yet to melt.

Truswell believes we are starting to see the end of the flood but said recovery is going to be very expensive for a lot of people.

“I think we are OK, I really think we're going to survive this fine,” he said.

“Maybe that sounds very optimistic, but I have been around long enough to know Mother Nature has a tendency to turn around really quick if she wants to.”

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