UPDATED: High streamflow advisory issued for Granby and Kettle rivers

A high streamflow advisory was issued for a number of rivers in the B.C. Southern Interior region, including the Kettle and Granby rivers.

The Ministry of Forests

The Ministry of Forests

Editor’s note: Updated with more current information.

A high streamflow advisory was issued for a number of rivers in the B.C. Southern Interior region, including the Kettle and Granby rivers last week.

According to a release from the B.C. River Forecast Centre, the rain and recent warm weather led to high snowmelt rates over the span of two or three days last week.

However, Grand Forks Fire Rescue Chief Dale Heriot said that, as of Monday, there wasn’t any immediate threat of flooding in the local area.

“The rivers peaked on Friday then dropped around three feet (0.9 metre). I’m not really concerned about the rain at this point unless it hangs around. These showers won’t do anything, but it we have another heavy rain like Thursday of last week we may have a concern again,” explained Heriot.

“The freezing level has dropped down a little to around 2,000 but it should be cool enough in the higher elevations to keep the melt slow.”

Heriot said that he’s been frequently monitoring the rivers and said that both rivers aren’t up to the river gauges yet.

“Everything was melting last week but it should be slower this week,” he said. “I do check my graphs two to three times again to see if there is a rise or not.”

Dan Derby, emergency program co-ordinator for the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB), stated, “The melt has started earlier this year, but we have a smaller snow pillow and water accumulated.”

Derby pointed out that the RDKB is looking at the situation from an emergency program perspective and is reaching out to communities who have had issues in the past.

“Neither records from this year or last year mean anything because it’s actually that snow pillow combined with rain,” he explained.

“Say we have torrential rains for three or four days and then we have hot weather, then we’re in trouble. It’s that combination of weather and snow pillow that makes the difference.”

He added that Greenwood has some issues with Boundary Creek.

“We had one resident in Beaverdell who had some issues, but its more preventative than imminent issues,” he concluded.

A high streamflow advisory, according to the B.C. River Forecast Centre, indicates that river levels are expected to rise rapidly but no major flooding is expected, although there could be minor flooding in low-lying areas.