March 13, 2018 4:58 pm
Updated: March 13, 2018 5:34 pm

Flood prevention on Swan Lake could make ice less stable

The province is advising people to stay off the ice at Swan Lake.

Jim Lenton / Global News

Don’t go out on the ice on Swan Lake north of Vernon, the province has suggested.

Officials are moving ahead with a flood prevention measure that may make the ice more dangerous.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development said it’s opening a dam on the lake, to lower the water level earlier than normal this year because of the usually large snow pack.

The ministry called the work “a precautionary measure, to reduce the chance of spring flooding in BX Creek,” which flows out of Swan Lake.

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BX Creek, like many areas of the Okanagan, experienced significant flooding last year.

READ MORE: Waters surge in Vernon while situation steady in Lumby

However, the ministry said letting more water out of the lake “may cause ice along the shoreline to become unstable, and a danger to the public.”

As of the beginning of March, the Okanagan’s snow pack was at 141 per cent of what is typical for this time of year.

READ MORE: Truck on bottom of north Okanagan lake removed

Over the last two winters, two pickup trucks have had to be removed from the lake after they fell through the ice

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