Submitted photo of Russell Farms Market near Crofton where someone was reportedly trapped on the roof Friday night. (Amanda Costin photo)

State of emergency declared for Cowichan Valley after heavy rain, flooding

Roads closed, evacuations taking place

••• 3 p.m. Update

The CVRD has issued it’s final statement of the day. CVRD officials say the local state of emergency will remain in place despite the threat of further flooding having subsided.

That doesn’t mean all roads have been re-opened, however.

“Flaggers are no on scene at several flooded roadways to direct traffic around road closures.”

The emergency reception centre that was set up at the Cowichan Community Centre has closed as nearly all residents using the service have returned home or have sought other accommodation. The centre may re-open if the need arises.

The emergency operations centre shut down at 2:30 p.m. but will reconvene at 9 a.m. Sunday to reassess the situation and give another public update.

Check social media and the CVRD and North Cowichan websites for the latest, as well as the Drive BC, and BC Hydro websites should that information be required.

••• 1 p.m. Update

Cowichan Tribes has declared a local state of emergency in accordance with the CVRD.

Tribes members can call

Derek Thompson, General Manager at 250-732-4962 or Alec Johnnie at 250-252-0095 if they need emergency shelter or other help.

The Siem Le’lum gym is open for members seeking shelter and warmth.

Those needing help evacuating from their flooded homes are asked to call Darin George 250- 510-5767 or Howie George 250-732-3838.

The Pacific Marine Road (Pacific Marine Circle Route) connecting Honeymoon Bay to Port Renfrew is closed.

Highway Rentals (2935 Sprott Rd.) is offering to help residents in protecting their property with sandbags, available free of charge until 4 p.m. today.

Power outages continue to affect communities across the region. Visit https://www.bchydro.com/power-outages/app/outage-map.html for up-to-date information in that regard.

•••10:40 a.m. Update Drive BC reports the the highway between Duncan and Chemainus has re-opened. Please expect delays and continue to drive based on the conditions.

<^>

The Cowichan Valley Regional District has declared a state of emergency and activated a Level 2 emergency operations centre as well as an emergency reception centre for evacuees in response to the intense localized flooding in various spots in the region, despite flood waters having receded as of Saturday morning.

The latest update — as of 9 a.m. Saturday morning is that The Trans Canada Highway remains closed north of Duncan for traffic in both directions. Other current roads closures include Westholme Road, Chemainus Road, Canada Avenue, Mary Street and Tzouhalem Road, according to CVRD spokesperson Kris Schumacher.

North Cowichan staffers are standing by at the traffic circle at the base of Lakes Road in the event a flood wall needs to be installed at that location.

Know before you go. Check the Drive BC website for up-to-date road closure information.

Another update is expected by 11:30 a.m.

READ ALSO: Flooding has closed several roads in Cowichan Valley

The water levels in the Koksilah, Chemainus, and Cowichan Rivers peaked overnight from Friday and into the early morning hours of Saturday. Real-time river level and flows can be monitored by residents at www.wateroffice.ec.gc.ca

An “atmospheric river” brought heavy rains with a station at Effingham Inlet, off the west coast, recording nearly 300mm of rain on Friday.

By Friday evening, Chemainus River was above a 5-year flow and still rising as was Cowichan River.

Around 10 p.m. flooding in areas of Crofton resulted in the evacuation of about 23 people. A BC Transit bus was used to bring 18 residents to the Duncan area to stay with friends and family, and the rest were accommodated in Crofton. According to the Cowichan Valley Regional District, evacuations continued into the early morning and at 3 a.m. the Cowichan Community Centre opened as a group lodging and reception centre for about 28 evacuated residents from North Cowichan and the Halalt First Nation.

Saturday morning CVRD staff were also called to fill their roles at the CVRD’s emergency reception centre at the Cowichan Community Centre as residents from multiple low-lying areas have been evacuated due to the flood.

Residents needing emergency evacuation help should call 911.



sarah.simpson@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

flooding

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Lake Cowichan in the wake of flooding that closed roads and saw homes evacuated Jan. 31 and Feb. 1. (Leslie Schofield photo)

Flooding near Somenos Marsh. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Just Posted

Conservation society hosting Free Your Things Weekend event June 20-21

Residents are encouraged to place reusable items with a free sign clearly visible

Williams Lake RCMP request public help in finding clues to stolen Dodge truck

Incident not linked to Tuesday’s hunt for a suspect who collided with a police car

UPDATE: Williams Lake RCMP suspend search overnight for suspect on the run

Public asked to keep eye out for suspicous activity

Rotary Stampede Community Spirit Drive-Thru Breakfast planned for Williams Lake, July 4

Stampede director Tim Rolph shared details during Tuesday’s city council meeting

Reverse graduation parade gets green light from Williams Lake city council

Proposal needs RCMP approval and meet public health office requirements

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping the Williams Lake Tribune continue its mission to provide trusted local news

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Young killer whale untangles itself from trap line off Nanaimo shore

DFO marine mammal rescue unit was en route as whale broke free from prawn trap line

Racist incident shocks Vancouver Island First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP investigating after video shows truck wheeling through Tseshaht territory

Vancouver Island school principal mourns brother, cousin killed during U.S. protests

Jelks says he’s grateful for the outpouring of support from the community in the wake of this tragedy

Bank of Canada keeps key interest rate target on hold at 0.25%

Central bank now expects GDP to decline between 10 and 20 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2019

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

B.C. schools see 30% of expected enrolment as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Most Read