Vernon townhouse complex partially evacuated due to mudslide

A small mudslide in Vernon caused a precautionary evacuation of six townhouse units on Saturday. Megan Turcato / Global News

About half-a-dozen residents of a Vernon townhouse complex were displaced from their homes Saturday night after a mudslide in the area.

Vernon’s fire chief said the evacuation of six units in the Mount Robson Place complex was “largely precautionary.”

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The City of Vernon said fire crews were called to the area on Saturday afternoon “due to reports of water and mud sliding down the hill and onto the street of a local development.”

Sunday morning, fire chief David Lind said the initial verbal report from the geotechnical engineer who was called in to assess the hillside, was that the underlying site was stable and that there was no real risk.

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Lind said, based on his discussion with the engineer, the mud flowing into the street was caused by a quick thaw that supersaturated the topsoil.

READ MORE: Mudslide comes down on Burnaby Mountain

The fire chief said residents could still see sloughing and mud debris down the road, but there was “no immediate risk to people in the area.”

Lind was hopeful residents would be able return to their homes later Sunday morning.

He was waiting for official report from the geotechnical engineer before allowing residents to return.

However, by Sunday afternoon, the residents’ return had been pushed back.

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Lind said residents from the evacuated units would be spending a second night away from home while remediation work was complete.

The fire chief said the geotechnical engineer had requested the work be done before residents were allowed back.

The strata is now expected to drain water pooling above the units and put out straw bales as temporary emergency buffers, among other things.

Lind now expects those displaced by the mudslide will be allowed to return on Monday.

On Sunday afternoon, he said officials still believe there is no significant risk to the properties.

Residents of the evacuated units were provided with food and accommodations by Emergency Support Services.

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Mudslide comes down on Burnaby Mountain – Jan 23, 2020

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