Heavy rain and flood warnings have triggered an evacuation order for the remote community of Rivers Inlet on B.C.’s central coast.
Residents of about 35 homes have been forced to leave the area after the rain washed out roads, according to Danielle Shaw, chief councillor of the Wuikinuxv Nation.
“It could split up the community and there could be several families left without access to medical care, to incoming provisions or groceries — pretty much completely isolated,” Shaw said Wednesday.
Some residents have volunteered to stay behind and monitor the situation, she added, and the nation is making sure to stay in contact with them.
The tiny village is about a 45-minute flight from Port Hardy on northern Vancouver Island.
According to the Central Coast Regional District, the River Forecast Centre is maintaining a flood watch for the area, including the Bella Coola River and tributaries, Kingcome River, Owikeeno-Rivers Inlet, and surrounding areas.
There is a high streamflow advisory for B.C.’s north coast, including watersheds around Prince Rupert, Kitimat and surrounding areas.
The region was hit by heavy rain earlier in the week, with rainfall totals of 60 to 70 millimetres in the Bella Coola Valley and 15 to 40 mm on the north coast.
A second wave of precipitation is expected on Wednesday and Thursday that could bring 80 to 150 mm, with the biggest amounts on the outer coast region and inland areas from the Bella Coola Valley to Kingcome River.