North Thompson River expected to surge again this week

River surge expected

The rain expected over the Central Interior this week could result in flows experienced in 1972, according to the River Forecast Centre.

Environment Canada is calling for 20 to 40 mm of rain over the course of Tuesday night, Wednesday and Thursday. Regions in the North Thompson could receive between 50 and 70 mm of rain, states the latest update from the province. However, there is some uncertainty around how much rain will come down. 

Dave Campbell, lead at the River Forecast Centre, is anticipating the North Thompson River to surge again as we head into the weekend, he told reporters during a media briefing Tuesday afternoon (June 30).

"At this point, we do have Kamloops under that flood watch. If the rainfall that is in the forecast right now materializes, I would expect we would be pushing that up to a flood warning. But at this point, given the uncertainty of the rainfall, we’re just sort of alerting to the potential for that kind of scenario," he said.

Low-lying areas in and around the Overlanders Bridge and other areas adjacent to the river are of concern, Campbell added.

"In terms of context, we're looking at a rise above current levels, the order of a metre or two. Given the context of current levels, just to put that in perspective, is a pretty big jump over what we've seen. We saw about a metre of rise over the last week, 10 days."

The South Thompson River, meanwhile, is not expected to increase as dramatically. That being said, the combined high flows for the North Thompson River and South Thompson River could mean a swell in the Thompson River at Kamloops.

Campbell encouraged people to use extreme caution when on or around rivers. 

"In a lot of the rivers, because flows have been so high, we've seen a lot of bank erosion, a lot of trees coming into the river and a lot of debris," he said. "It's probably not a good time to be out there right now."

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