City updating flood mitigation efforts

Flood mitigation work continues in Kelowna as rising temperatures coincide with rising water levels.

Public infrastructure, such as the hospital, water treatment facilities, and the cancer centre, are being treated as top priorities for flood protection measures, followed by public roadways, parks, and beaches.

As far as the beaches go, EOS Public Information Officer Ed Henczel says Okanagan Lake is being closely monitored for potential flooding, and new methods are being used to protect the beaches.

“Last year we had tiger dams in place, this year we’re going to with log booms to keep the waves from eroding the beaches,” says Henczel. “The tiger dams weren’t as effective as we had hoped for; some of them punctured because of floating debris, whereas log booms have proven effective in the past.”

Henczel also says that Mission Creek, one of Kelowna’s highest flooding concerns, is being watched closely, and is currently well under control.

“Water levels are within seasonal norms, so we should be able to handle any high-water event. We are currently at 60 to 65 cubic metres a second, and it’s slowly trending upwards with the increasing temperatures, but we’re nowhere near Mission Creek being an issue right now.”

Mill Creek is also stable for the time being, with crews removing tiger dams and water bladders near Shadow Ridge.

The next week will be a critical point for flood preparations, with a mix of high temperatures and rainfall in the forecast.

You can stay updated on flooding developments by subscribing to email notifications at cordemergency.ca.