Areas in the south and central interior of the province remain under Evacuation Alert or Order after recent flooding events, and there is a potential for increased snowmelt and further precipitation and flooding next week.
If you are returning home or were unable to get home during the recent flooding, Emergency Management BC asks that you take precautions for your personal safety.
Please follow the instructions of your regional district or local emergency authority for when it is safe to return to your home.
Contact your local health authority about possible food contamination. As a general rule, avoid a health hazard by destroying all food which was submerged in flood waters or is at risk because it was not temperature controlled.
In the event that public water supplies are contaminated, a water notification will be issued. Notifications can include a “boil water notice,” a “water quality advisory,” or a “do not use notice.”
A boil water notice is issued when a drinking water health risk is determined. Bring water to a rolling boil for at least one minute, or use an alternate, safe source of water. Use boiled water for:
- Brushing teeth
- Washing fruits and vegetables to be eaten raw
- Preparing food
- Mixing baby formula
- Making ice
Contact your local government for information on specific water notifications.
All electrical wiring in buildings that has been partially or fully covered by flood water must be checked by a qualified electrician or electrical inspector before being put into service again. Any loose wires should be considered “live” and are a definite hazard. If water levels were high enough to cover the gas meter, call FortisBC or your local gas provider to check your meter and regulator before using your gas system.
Use caution when removing building materials and furniture that have become wet with flood water. Extensive mould growth will likely occur. Failure to remove contaminated materials and reduce moisture and humidity can present serious long-term health risks such as respiratory disease and allergic reactions. People with mould allergies or compromised immune systems are most at risk of potential illness.
Disinfecting drinking water: https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthlinkbc-files/disinfecting-drinking-water
PreparedBC Flood Information for Homeowners and Home Buyers guide: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/public-safety-and-emergency-services/emergency-preparedness-response-recovery/embc/preparedbc/preparedbc_flood_information_for_homeowners_and_home_buyers_web.pdf
Be careful when beginning a clean-up. Be aware of physical, microbiological, and chemical hazards: http://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthfiles/hfile20.stm
Sewage systems and flooding:
For information on flood conditions, visit Emergency Info BC: https://www.emergencyinfobc.gov.bc.ca/