The Morrison Subdivision in Kimberley flooded in April 2018.

The Morrison Subdivision in Kimberley flooded in April 2018.

RDEK sets up self-serving sandbagging stations as snow melt continues

Residents in East Kootenay rural areas encouraged to protect property, mitigate flood risk

The Regional District of East Kootenay is encouraging residents in flood-prone areas to be prepared for the upcoming spring melt season.

“It is important for people to protect their homes and properties early,” said Terry Balan, the Protective Services Supervisor. “We have established numerous sandbag stations around the region and they are available to anyone wanting to be proactive in sandbagging on their properties.”

Self-serve sandbagging stations have been set up at the Cranbrook Public Works yard, Jaffray Community Centre, The Hoz parking lot in Hosmer, Fairmont Transfer Station, Windermere Fire Hall parking lot and Edgewater library, according to an RDEK press release.

READ: Cranbrook readying for spring melt and potential flooding

Residents can go down to the stations with their own shovels and gloves. Sand and bags are provided free of charge.

The bags should be filled up to three-quarters of the way with sand, with the ends folded over for the best compaction.

READ: Hundreds evacuated in Grand Forks area as flood waters continue to rise

“Preparation and prevention are key,” said Balan. “Residents who are concerned that they may be impacted by high water levels should take steps now to prepare themselves.

“At the emergency management level, we are working cooperatively with all the municipalities and First Nations in the East Kootenay and are ready to provide support should it be required as we head into the spring freshet.”

The RDEK says that property owners are primarily responsible for protecting their assets in cases of localized flooding.

If any residents see or experience wide-scale flooding, calling the Proincial Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456 is the fastest way to activate local local emergency management personnel.

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