Cold Spring Creek debris trap. Photo courtesy RDEK.

Evacuation alert lifted in Fairmont following debris flow events

The RDEK has rescinded an evacuation alert issued for Fairmont Creek in the wake of a major debris flow event at the end of May.

Residents along the creek were evacuated after creek levels rapidly rose during a sudden rainstorm on May 30. Those displaced were allowed back in their homes three days later, but an evacuation alert has been in place ever since then.

“While the debris removal work continues on Fairmont Creek, we have now regained enough capacity within the system that we can lift the Alert,” says Information Officer Loree Duczek.

The rainstorm combined with warming and spring freshet, caused two debris flow events in Fairmont Creek and Cold Spring Creek — the second largest in Fairmont’s recorded history.

“We had debris flows in both Fairmont Creek and Cold Spring Creek and it has been staggering to see how much material came down,” said Duczek. “In the past 27 days, over 3,600 dump truck loads of debris have been removed in Fairmont. To put that in perspective, lined up end-to-end, those dump trucks would stretch from Fairmont Fire Hall to the Fire Valley Café in Canal Flats.”

While the evacuation alert is lifted, debris removal continues in Fairmont, and will continue into the summer, according to the RDEK.

“I would like to thank everyone who has been working so hard since May 31 to get us to where we are today. I know there is still much work to be done, but it is encouraging to be at a point where we can lift the Alert,” said Susan Clovechok, the RDEK Area F Director.

A state of local emergency remains in place.



trevor.crawley@cranbrooktownsman.com

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