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Floodwaters creeping up to water treatment plant in Taber, Alberta

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The risk of major flooding in southern Alberta is spreading as the town of Taber is now under a state of emergency. Here's Joe Scarpelli with a look at what's at risk and how the town is preparing for what could come – Mar 29, 2018

The day after the Town of Taber declared a local state of emergency, Premier Rachel Notley said her government is willing and ready to lend a hand with the flood threat in southern Alberta if called upon.

“Our government is coordinating with them right now to ensure that whatever additional supports they require, we’re able to provide,” she said in Lethbridge on Thursday.

The Town of Taber declared the local state of emergency after attempts to redirect water away from the town’s water treatment plant were unsuccessful

Resident Barb Pierson stocked up on bottles of water after hearing the news.

“We don’t know how bad it’s going to get, so I’ve been out to pick up water so that we’ve got drinking water,” she said. “We can use other water for everything else.”

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READ MORE: Taber, Alberta declares local state of emergency due to overland flooding

Taber CAO Cory Armfelt says conditions greatly improved overnight and should remain stable throughout the weekend with cooler temperatures in the forecast.

“Now we have onhand a pump that’s actively pumping water from this area into our sanitary sewer system and controlling what’s happening on this side of it,” he said.

But Armfelt said he knows that once the warmer weather returns, so too will the flooding concerns.

The water treatment plant has two days worth of reserve water in the event of a facility shutdown, though Armfelt doesn’t anticipate that will happen.

“Not that we don’t have to remain really diligent on it, but I certainly think we’re ahead of it now,” he said.

READ MORE: Local state of emergency remains in Taber area amid flood concerns

 

A local state of emergency also remains in place for the M.D. of Taber. Six were homes were evacuated earlier in the week as the situation took a sudden turn for the worse.

READ MORE: 6 homes evacuated as overland flooding in M.D. of Taber gets worse

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Pierson is hoping for the best as she says flooding concerns are unusual in her neighborhood.

“I have been here since 1956 and I don’t ever remember any flooding other than the river for jams of ice,” Pierson said. “Who knows nowadays?”

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