January 4, 2016 1:06 pm

Ice jams on Bulkley River near Smithers put residents on alert

Credit: Elsbeth Fielding


Ice jams on the Bulkley River near Smithers have put residents on alert for flooding and the possibility of leaving their homes.

The jams have formed in the area between Main Street and Dohler Flats, with minor overland flooding in the Ebenezer Flats area.

Officials from the Regional District say that ice jams make it difficult to predict where and if flooding will occur. Access to some homes has already been cut off by the rising and freezing waters. The public is asked to keep away from the Bulkley River.

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Residents should also watch the river as water levels can change very quickly. They should also be prepared with an emergency supply kit, including at least three days of supplies of food and water for each family member. Arrangements should be made for pets and livestock and residents should follow the instructions from emergency officials.

For those who have to leave their homes, officials warn not to walk through moving water as it only takes two-feet to sweep a car away and six-inches to knock a person over.

Residents should also leave a note on their door saying where you’ve gone and then register with the local reception centre.

For further information, contact the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako at 1-800-320-3339 or Emergency Management BC at 1-800-663-3456.

Residents in the region have been sharing images of the ice jams on Facebook:


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