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RDKB advises residents to stay well clear of rising waters as snow melt accelerates rivers

Boundary Sentinel
By Boundary Sentinel
April 25th, 2020

In a media release, the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary Emergency Operations Centre said staff are continuing to track river and creek levels daily from Big White to Champion Lakes as snowmelt accelerates with warmer weather and rain.

The RDKB said forecasts peg the regional snowpack is currently at 122% of normal.

“Most people in our region can see that water levels in our creeks, streams and rivers are rising,” said Mark Stephens, EOC Director for the RDKB.

“As this happens, erosion is possible and the riverbank can change rapidly. People need to stay back from the banks of fast moving water for their own safety.”

Stephens said that RDKB staff measure water levels in the Kettle and Granby river system and in Christina, Boundary and Trail creeks daily, the RDKB EOC monitors all available data from river level sites, snowpack sites and weather stations within the Kettle and Granby watersheds in BC and Washington State.

What staff have seen to date matches weekly data from the BC River Forecast Centre.

“We are watching the weather and snowmelt for the Kettle closely. We have definitely seen that transition into the melt season with mid-elevation and even high-elevation snow starting to come down.” Stephens said.

“The West Kettle is currently at a one year return level and is forecasted to rise and fall throughout the next few days.” 

The RDKB warns everyone to stay away from the edges of watercourses and report any major erosion or flooding to the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456.

Stephens added that the RDKB has a stockpile of 250,000 sandbags across the region, and will inform the public of local sand pickup sites if flood forecasts show a probability of localized flooding. Neither the RDKB nor the Province of BC will pay for sand ordered and delivered privately to any property in the region.

More information about snow and river levels as well as how to prepare for the 2020 freshet, visit


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