Shuswap Falls Hydro park is under water near Lumby June 1, 2020. (Ardis Miller photo)

North Okanagan bands together to block flood water

Creeks swollen and flowing over roads near Lumby, threatening properties

Some Lumby residents worked all night to protect properties as water levels rose rapidly Monday, June 1.

Water is up to the top of the fence at the Shuswap Falls hydro park and creeks have swollen and are coming up over banks and roads, such as Mabel Lake Road near the lake and Whitevale Road.

“A big thank you to all those wonderful people that showed up tonight and stayed ‘til 4 a.m. to help with the sandbagging,” said Tony Schilter, on a Lumby Facebook group. “I’ve got the skid steer on standby now for anyone who needs help.”

It’s not the first time the community has come together to help friends and neighbours.

“Lumby people always seem to come together in times of need,” said resident Norma Bouzek.

But sadly, it’s not the first time the community has been plagued by flood waters. It’s become an annual occurrence for Lumby. And despite efforts to keep protections in place, the village is forced to remove them every year.

Whatever goes in is considered temporary and needs to be removed within a certain time period, through Emergency Management British Columbia.

“The DFO (Department of Fisheries and Oceans) came out and said, ‘you are in violation and have done damage to the creek and you need to take it out,’” said Mayor Kevin Acton, of massive berms that were put in place to retain high water and in turn saved more than $20-million worth of infrastructure each year.

Despite attempts to convince DFO to allow the berms to remain in place, there were apparent damages to salmon habitat.

Meanwhile, a permanent solution seems impossible to the high-water problems that plague Lumby every year.

“It’s frustrating,” said Acton. “We’ve been forced to remove millions of dollars worth of work.”

There are gabion dikes — metal baskets filled with rock or sand — being put in place, but will again be taken out once the flood risk eases.

“I don’t understand why we don’t just put it in and leave it,” Acton said.

READ MORE: High water floods Cherryville park

READ MORE: Flood potential puts Lumby on evacuation alert


@VernonNews
jennifer@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

flood watchflooding

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19 outbreak at Oliver farm declared over

There continues to be other community exposure events in the Interior Health region

Morning Start: The Exorcist film set was haunted

Your morning start for Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2020

Former Summerlander receives Emmy nomination for makeup work

Lucky Bromhead recognized for her work with Canadian sitcom Schitt’s Creek

Mural adds artistic flair to downtown Keremeos

A new, privately commissioned mural has received praise from residents

Morning Start: High heels were first designed for men

Your morning start for Monday, Aug. 10, 2020

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

VIDEO: Revelstoke rallies to save snared eagle

Local climber scales tree to save the raptor

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

COVID-19 exposure alert at Cactus Club in downtown Kelowna

Interior Health also announced another three cases of COVID-19 tied to Kelowna, bringing the total to 161

Most Read