City of Vernon keeping close eye on area creeks as snow melts and water levels rise

Sun shining, creeks rising

As the snow melts and the rain falls, the City of Vernon is keeping a close eye on area creeks.

City crews are monitoring creek levels and provincial snowpack reports, as well as checking city infrastructure that could be impacted by increased water levels, such as roads, culverts, outfalls, bridges and storm retention structures.

“Utility crews have removed sediment from the two sediment basins located on BX Creek,” says utilities manager Sean Irwin. “Sediment has also been removed from the BX Creek dam site below Silver Star Road.”

More than 1,000 cubic metres of sediment was removed this year.

“The city is closely monitoring the weather and snow melt conditions in higher elevations,” says Irwin. “The water level and creek flow has started to increase along Upper and Lower BX Creeks and in Vernon Creek. At this time, all three creeks have additional capacity available.”

“Weather is a factor in freshet,” says Sue Saunders, the city's emergency program co-ordinator. “Sudden and prolonged warm spells or heavy rainfall at this time of year can tip the potential for flooding. Therefore, the city encourages all property owners adjacent to creeks to closely and regularly monitor their properties and consider whether they are prepared for the potential of changing conditions.”

Owners are reminded they are responsible for protecting their property from flood-related risks.

Residents can pick up sand and sandbags at the City of Vernon operations building on 48th Avenue. Bring your own shovel.

For more information from the BC River Forecast Centre regarding spring freshet and snow conditions, see the province’s website. And for additional information to help prepare yourself and your property, visit PreparedBC.

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