Flood preparations underway in northern B.C.

Municipalities and regional districts in northwest and northeast B.C. are asking residents to be ready for flooding.

Streams, creeks, and river banks may burst because of heavy rainfall

Officials worry heavy rain in northern B.C. could cause floods like this one in Dawson Creek in June 2016. (Brett Hyde/CBC)

Flood watches are now in effect for the Bulkley River in northwest B.C. and the Peace in the province's northeast as weather systems move through the regions, bringing heavy and sustained rain. 

"We're gonna see nearly half the total month's worth of rain fall in a couple of days," said Environment Canada meteorologist Matt MacDonald. 

Up to 80 millimetres is expected to fall in the north and south Peace, and the southern sections of the Fort Nelson region.

"It's ... a prolonged rainfall event."

For the Bulkley Valley and The Lakes regions, up to 60 millimetres could fall by Saturday. 

Deja-vu of 2016 

Sarah Griffith remembers June 2016 very well. Last year, floods forced about 60 people to flee their homes in Dawson Creek.

"It was very taxing on all our guys," said Griffith, who works for Caribou Road Services Ltd. 

She and her highways maintenance co-workers dealt with heavy rain, and damaging floods.

Flood waters washed out at least one bridge in Dawson Creek, B.C. in June 2016. (@NuclearMoose/Twitter)

In a span of just 24 hours, up to 100 millimetres of rain fell. It flooded roads and highways, destroyed infrastructure, and forced dozens of people to flee their homes. 

"We were kind of hoping for a nice easy summer, and spring, and everything, and it's just not coming around," Griffith said. 

The Peace River Regional District is now offering sand and sand bags at the following locations: 

  • Moberly Lake Fire Hall.
  • Yips Subdivision on Moberly Lake.
  • Dokie at Compass Services.
  • Ivor Johnson Park in Hasler.
  • Tomslake Fire Hall.
  • Tupper Community Hall.

Officials are also asking residents to stay away from river banks because they may be unstable.