Flooding in B.C. "catastrophic:" Official

GRAND FORKS, B.C. - Residents who refuse to leave their homes, as their communities become submerged in floodwaters, are posing extra challenges for emergency crews in B.C.

Emergency operations official Chris Marsh says many people ignored an evacuation order in the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary, which meant rescue resources had to be put toward going back to rescue them.

He says nearly 2,800 people have been forced from their homes in Grand Forks, where two days of heavy rain pushed three rivers to levels that hadn't been seen since floods 70 years ago, while smaller creeks also had record-high flows.

Marsh says the effects of the flooding in Grand Forks have been catastrophic, and it will take years and millions of dollars to recover from the damage.

David Campbell, head of the B.C. River Forecast Centre, says an extended period of dry weather is expected across the province next week.

He says temperatures over the past three weeks have been about five degrees above normal in the Interior, and that could mean more trouble for parts of southeast B.C. as the winter's heavy snowpack melts.

More than 4,000 properties in the province have been evacuated as a result of the flooding.