Floods in British Columbia | About 100 soldiers arrived in Abbotsford

by time news

(Vancouver) About 120 military personnel have arrived in Abbotsford as this Fraser Valley town begins massive reconstruction of dikes, roads, bridges and other infrastructure damaged as a result of severe flooding earlier this week in British Columbia.


One of the most urgent jobs facing the military is the construction of more than two kilometers of permanent or temporary dikes, to prevent water from the river reaching the lowlands of the Sumas Grassland, where many dairy and poultry farms have already been flooded.

In addition to the teams that will arrive throughout the day on Friday, the military says more than 200 military personnel are waiting in Edmonton for orders to deploy to the neighboring province.

For their part, City of Merritt officials said the level of the Coldwater River was dropping after the waterway overflowed on Monday and submerged the town’s sewage treatment plant, forcing the evacuation of the whole community.

But as the waters recede, the city’s director of business services says it’s clear the river has carved a new channel through the middle of what was once Pine Street on the northwest side of the river. municipality. Greg Lowis indicates that a new island has also formed between the new course of the river and its old bed.

Mr. Lowis is aware that it will take “great amounts of energy and effort” to divert a waterway from its new bed – and he wasn’t sure what the City will do now.

New measures Friday

As rescue and relief efforts intensify in areas hardest hit by flooding and mudslides, the B.C. government is expected to provide more information on the state of emergency on Friday than ‘he said on Wednesday.

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said the measures could include an order preventing the passage of all but essential travelers, as limited access is slowly being restored along some highways.

About a thousand people trapped in Hope were able to leave overnight when the single-track crossing was cleared on Highway 7, but around 17,000 people still cannot access their homes as evacuation orders were issued. cover some 6,900 properties.

On another front, RCMP say search efforts continue in the landslide area along Highway 99 south of Lillooet, where a woman’s body was found this week, and where police received reports of four missing persons.

The Canadian Red Cross, the Salvation Army, the SPCA and United Way are among a dozen organizations that raise funds or provide assistance to flood victims in British Columbia.

The provincial government also launched its Disaster Financial Assistance Program for eligible residents or businesses in southern or central British Columbia affected by flooding or landslides between November 14 and 16. Applications can be submitted by mid-February.

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