Keeping an eye on rising water levels

Waterfront property owners and those in low lying areas adjacent to Okanagan Lake are advised to take steps to protect against still rising lake levels and wave action.

Waterfront property owners and those in low lying areas adjacent to Okanagan Lake are advised to take steps to protect against still rising lake levels and wave action.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations expects Okanagan Lake will surpass its full pool level.  How much it rises above full pool will depend on weather conditions.

Lakefront property owners are being advised by the Central Okanagan Emergency Response Centre to take the necessary steps to protect their properties, docks and other waterfront structures from the high water levels and the impact of wave action.

Sandbags are available for those facing imminent threat at all main municipal firehalls in the Central Okanagan as well as in the fire service areas within the Central Okanagan East and West electoral areas (Joe Rich, Wilson’s Landing, North Westside and Ellison).  Sand is available for City of Kelowna residents at the Cook Street Boat Launch.

Due to the high lake water levels, all Okanagan Lake boaters should keep their speeds and wakes down when approaching or travelling near the shoreline.  Boaters should continue to watch for and avoid floating debris on Okanagan Lake.

Residents and waterfront property owners are being asked to leave any wood debris along local beaches and waterfront areas in an effort to reduce erosions from wave action during this period of high lake water levels.

Property owners living adjacent to area creeks and streams should continue to watch water levels and take appropriate precautions.

If you notice flooding in your area, please contact the Provincial Emergency Program 24-hour Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456.

Information and pamphlets on flood preparedness including a recommended method for sandbag diking are available from the Regional District of Central Okanagan office (1450 KLO Road) and the main City of Kelowna fire hall on Enterprise Way as well as on the Regional District website regionaldistrict.com/emergencyplan.  Information about flood precautions is also on the Provincial Emergency Program website:  pep.bc.ca/floods/preparedness.html

Residents are asked to continue to exercise caution near any area creeks and streams.  Please keep children and pets safely back from creek banks, which may be slippery or subject to erosion by the higher, swifter moving water.  There is also the potential for unexpected rapid increases in creek water levels.