The BC River Forecast Centre has issued a flood warning for the Sproat and Somass Rivers and the surrounding creeks and tributaries near Port Alberni.
A Flood Warning means that river levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to the rivers affected will result.
While flooding of some areas along the Somass and Sproat Rivers is occurring, major flooding is not expected in the City of Port Alberni at this time.
Pacific Rim Highway is open but reduced to single lane alternating traffic near the intersection of Hector Road. The Ministry of Transportation has established alternate detour routes if a closure is required. The public is urged to use caution and stay alert while traveling and should check Drive BC for the latest updates: www.drivebc.ca.
A boil water advisory has also been issued by the First Nations Health Authority in partnership with the Tseshaht First Nation. This advisory is in effect only for the homes and businesses on Tsahaheh I.R. #1. This includes Hector Road, Yaqwilmit Place and all areas west of McCoy Lake Road – Pacific Rim Highway intersection, including Saiyatchapis Road and adjourning roads, and Wattys Road – Pacific Rim Highway, up to and including Tseshaht Market.
A Level 1 Emergency Operations Centre has been activated by the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District (ACRD) to coordinate any emergency response. The ACRD encourages all property owners adjacent to and in low lying areas to take appropriate measures to protect their property and to make an emergency plan in the event any possible flooding occurs.
Officials continue to monitor weather patterns and water levels of local creeks, streams and lakes. Approximately 30-40 mm of rain is expected over the next 12-24 hours with peak flow for the Somass River estimated to be Wednesday evening. The public is cautioned to stay clear of rivers due to quickly flowing water and potentially unstable riverbanks.
Self-serve sandbag stations remain available for residents at: Harold Bishop Fire Hall, 7667 Pacific Rim Highway. Sand and a skid of sandbags are next to the west side of the building. Beaver Creek Fire Hall, 6038 Beaver Creek Rd. Sand and a skid of sandbags are next to the side of the building in the parking lot. Port Alberni Public Works Yard, 4150 Sixth Ave. Sand and sandbags are located in the parking lot adjacent to Sixth Avenue.
These supplies are accessible anytime. Residents should bring their own shovels and be prepared to fill the bags.