Atmospheric River Event

The most current update will be posted at the beginning of this feed:

December 22, 2021

The District of Hope has cancelled the State of Local Emergency and the Evacuation Order for Tunnels Road has been rescinded.  An alert remains for two properties on Gardner Drive due to erosion.

December 10, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

The District is now transitioning to the recovery phase after the atmospheric rivers.  Our Emergency Operations Centre remains open and continues to address critical areas of concern such as bank protection and future flood prevention.  This means we are working closely with the Province to fund emergency works now and preventative works in the future.  The District and Province are already collaborating in the protection work around the area of the Fraser Canyon Hospital and we have requested significant funding for similar work in the Gardner Drive area to protect homes there.  We also continue our efforts to complete analysis and work in other areas along the Coquihalla River.

We still have one residence under evacuation order.  This means we need a local state of emergency to be maintained.  I have requested the Province extend this order until December 19th.  By then it is hoped the situation will be safe enough for the residents to return.  Then we can cancel both the order and state of emergency.

 

From Mayor Peter Robb,

The District is now transitioning to the recovery phase after the atmospheric rivers.  Our Emergency Operations Centre remains open and continues to address critical areas of concern such as bank protection and future flood prevention.  This means we are working closely with the Province to fund emergency works now and preventative works in the future.  The District and Province are already collaborating in the protection work around the area of the Fraser Canyon Hospital and we have requested significant funding for similar work in the Gardner Drive area to protect homes there.  We also continue are efforts to complete analysis and work in other areas along the Coquihalla River.

We still have one residence under evacuation order.  This means we need to maintain a local state of emergency to be maintained.  I have requested the Province extend this order until December 19th.  By then it is hoped the situation will be safe enough for the residents to return.  Then we can cancel both the order and state of emergency.

EVACUATION ALERTS RESCINDED With the Exception of 65591 and 65601 Gardner Drive.

December 6, 2021 @ 1400

The District of Hope has been advised the imminent danger of the Atmospheric River Event has dimished at this time.

The Evacuation Alerts, pursuant to Section 10(1)(h) of the Emergency Program Act, to prepare for evacuation to the following areas has, therefore, been rescinded / cancelled:

Issued November 28, 2021

  • Riverview Drive

Issued November 30, 2021

  • Gardner Drive, (South side of street) Excluding 65591, 65601 Gardner Drive.
  • 65771, 20295 & 20299 Kettle Valley Road
  • 21391, 21381, 21371, 21361, 21351, 21341, 21331, 21291, 21292 Mallard Dr.
  • 900, & 21440 Golf Course Rd.
  • Olson Ave (Odd numbered addresses)
  • 730 Coquihalla St.
  • 777, 755, 735, 725, & 715 Thacker Ave.
  • 225 & 245 7th Ave.
  • 649, 655, 660, 669, 670, 680, 689 & 690 Hazel St.
  • River Parade
  • 800 Kawkawa Lake Rd.
  • 1275 7th Ave
  • Robertson Cres.
  • Glenaire Dr.
  • North side of Forrest Cres.
  • 901 & 945 Old Hope Princeton Way
  • 625, 635, 645 & 660 Birch Pl.

Issued December 1, 2021

  • Silverhope Creek Area, Hope BC (all properties adjacent to Silverhope Creek)

December 06, 2021

Message from Mayor Peter Robb,

As I continue to tour and meet with people to discuss the aftermath of the Atmospheric Rivers, I am always reassured at the can do and community spirit exhibited by our citizens.  We are actively addressing areas of concern such as the riverbank along the Coquihalla, Othello Road, and other low-lying areas.  You will clearly see work already underway and we are queuing up more projects we feel need Provincial endorsement and funding right now. These areas include the river bank along a section of Gardner Drive, the Glenhalla Dike to the Hospital, both the Rotary Trail and golf course riverbanks.  Our Operations Department, along with Hydrotechnical Engineers, are moving quickly to protect banks, confirm future requirements and prioritize project requests to the Province.  

All this brings to mind our belief that the Province should assume all diking authority as they are the level of government best resourced to undertake required capital and maintenance work.  The current model of having municipalities compete for grant funding amongst each other has not worked for some time.

We are cancelling the issued Flood Alerts to date and issuing a new one for two residences along Gardner Drive.  The Local State of Emergency was recently extended as we still have an evacuation order in effect for one property.  Until we can confirm that it is safe for the occupants to return, the Order must remain and so too the State of Emergency. 

Along with Provincial authorities, we are transitioning towards a full recovery phase.  We will be seeking significant funding to address the areas of risk mentioned above.  Nonetheless, the District staff remains extremely busy with this added workload and I ask your patience while they try to catch up.

December 03, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

Our weather is now changing and relief from rain is being followed by snow warnings.  Nonetheless, public safety and emergency works continue to be our priority.   When we look out now, along the banks of the Coquihalla River, we will see changes to the topography that will now be permanent. The Coquihalla river banks remain unsafe, so please avoid these areas as conditions can change rapidly.  Also try to give work crews as much space as possible along the river.  We are all curious about what the work looks like but we need to let them get on with it.

Our Emergency Operations Centre is still up and running and continues to monitor high risk areas. District staff and myself are in communication with the Federal and Provincial governments for disaster financial assistance and build better funding.   We will continue to have those properties on Flood Alert remain on alert.  As we have one property on Evacuation Order, and there is a small chance others could be issued, I have requested an extension of our State of Local Emergency for seven more days.  

Continued thanks need to go out to community members and First Nation neighbours, who have supported our staff during this trying and emotional two weeks. We are on the road to recovery, albeit now with snow shovels.

December 01, 2021

NEW Evacuation Alerts

The District of Hope is proactively placing properties adjacent to SilverHope Creek on Evacuation Alert.  Effected addresses are being notified directly.  Maps of the effected areas are posted in the Document Library.

This is only an ALERT to prepare those residents to evacuate your premises or property should it be found necessary. Residents will be given as much advance notice as possible prior to an evacuation; however, you may receive limited notice due to changing conditions.

December 01, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

We have likely seen the worst of the effects of the three atmospheric storms passing through Hope.  However, we are not out of the woods yet.  There is still upstream snow melting that needs to be monitored and will only add to the volume and velocity of the Coquihalla River and Silver-Hope Creek.  Our main concerns are the banks along these waterways and the safety of the residents nearby.  That is why we sent out more Evacuation Alerts yesterday to remind those residents that banks are still unstable. There may be more warnings to come.

You may have already noticed that a significant amount of heavy equipment is circulating throughout and through the District.  This equipment is being used by the Province and us to undertake the work of cleaning up, stabilizing and repairing roads, riverbanks, etc.  You should not be alarmed but rather be reassured that work is being done.

Locally, we are doing work on the Coquihalla to address the risks associated with river bank erosion adjacent the Fraser Canyon Hospital and Riverside Manor.  There is not a critical immediate risk identified but we need to stop the incremental erosion that would threaten these buildings if not halted. Other prioritized preventative measures, repairs and clean-up activities are ramping up. 

Yesterday I toured the Golf Course and viewed first-hand the damage as result of the atmospheric rivers.  They have lost land due to bank erosion, overland flooding and erosion occurred with new channels and deep ditches being carved out.  Also, there is significant deposits of silt, sand, trees and debris after the recession of the flood waters.  We will be working with the Province and the Golf Club to address the situation.  Our Emergency Operations Centre is prioritizing these works accordingly in relation to all the other work that needs to go on.

November 30, 2021

NEW Evacuation Alerts

The District of Hope is proactively placing a further 114 properties along the Coquihalla River on Evacuation Alert.  Effected addresses are being notified directly.  Maps of all the alert areas are posted here.

These are only ALERTS to prepare those residents to evacuate your premises or property should it be found necessary. Residents will be given as much advance notice as possible prior to an evacuation; however, you may receive limited notice due to changing conditions.

www.emergencyinfobc.gov.bc.ca

November 29, 2021

A message from Mayor Peter Robb,

The second atmospheric storm has passed but we have at least one more to experience. Our concern about the Coquihalla River remains paramount as continued bank erosion and high levels may result in low level areas adjacent to the River experiencing localized flooding. As you are aware, the District is in a declared State of Local Emergency and one Evacuation Order has been issued.

Current forecasts for precipitation for Tuesday through Thursday are not as significant as the first atmospheric river event on the 14th and 15th. Nonetheless, we are now dealing with highly saturated soils, bank erosion and many local streams that continue to run at high levels. Staff are also amending plans to include the fact that we have lost Othello Road as an evacuation route out of the District.

We may well issue more Evacuation Alerts to allow for timely preparation to leave, for those potentially affected. Our Emergency Operations Centre has gotten the Ministry of Forests Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) to conduct an overflight of the Coquihalla to assist in situational awareness and forward planning. Indications are that the Coquihalla is flowing well and no blockages or log jams are apparent. We continue to support the Fraser Canyon Hospital in their planning and are providing sandbags as requested.

The District and myself will continue to issue communication and I would like to remind all of you to not approach river banks and potential danger areas. The conditions of these areas can change instantaneously and you could fall victim to bank erosion, for example. It is not worth your life to take photos or create YouTube videos.

November 29, 2021 - UPDATE:

The District of Hope Emergency Operations Centre remains active and under a State of Local Emergency.  

Current Orders and Alerts:

Evacuation Alerts: 18 properties (Riverview Drive Area)

Evacuation Orders: 1 Property (Tunnels Road)

November 28, 2021

EVACUATION ALERT - Riverview Drive

An Evacuation Alert has been issued to homes on Riverview Drive.  This is only an ALERT to prepare those residents to evacuate your premises or property should it be found necessary. Residents will be given as much advance notice as possible prior to an evacuation; however you may receive limited notice due to changing conditions.  

November 28, 2021

The District of Hope has declared a State of Local Emergency in order to facilitate any alerts and/or orders as needed due to the Atmospheric River Event.

The Province of British Columbia has directed that any evacuees are to register either in person at the Abbotsford Tradex (1190 Cornell St, Abbotsford, BC) or online at ess.gov.bc.ca.

Currently an address on Tunnels road is under an evacution order.

November 28, 2021

From Mayor Robb,

Today we are experiencing more precipitation but not as much as on November 14th and 15th.  Both the Coquihalla and Fraser Rivers, although high now, are not expected to reach the levels of the 14th and 15th.  Water effects are being felt in our low lying areas such as the East Kawkawa Lake area, the southern end of Kettle Valley Road, Othello Road and other locales.  These are all of concern and if evacuations need to be undertaken, we will take the necessary steps.  Anyone that may need to be evacuated will be notified appropriately and provided the necessary emergency social services information (e.g. where to register, etc.).

We are expecting a brief let up in the weather later today and Monday with another system to pass through Tuesday and Wednesday.  The amounts of precipitation expected then are yet to be firmly forecasted.  District Staff and our Emergency Operations Centre are deployed and functioning to address areas of concern and safety. 

For the latest weather information please go to www.weather.gc.ca

For the latest road information please go to www.drivebc.ca

 

SANDBAGS

For residents in need of Sandbags, the District has set up a central location to obtain both bags and sand on 7th avenue near Kawkawa Lake Road (by the ball fields).

Should the supply need to be replenished, please call 604-869-6020.

November 27, 2021

For the latest highway restrictions and closures, please check www.drivebc.ca

 

November 26, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

Two more atmospheric river events are forecasted to take place this weekend and Tuesday-Wednesday next week.  The District has not relaxed its emergency preparedness posture since the events of the 14th and 15th of November.  In fact, with the luxury of more time and increased collaboration with Provincial authorities, we are all better prepared for these next events. 

Our Emergency Operations Centre remains activated, and continues to monitor the situation, and meets daily.  District Operations is cleaning up effects of the last weather event, while monitoring and being prepared to address these next two predicted atmospheric rivers.

However, it remains that individuals and families must be prepared in case of emergency.  In case of sustained power outages or ordered evacuation have you made arrangements with family or friends to stay for a while?  Please remember that warnings, alerts, and orders will be communicated to those residents effected, including by door-to-door notification.

Please continue to check our website at www.hope.ca and our District Facebook page and monitor the Alertable App  for the latest information.

November 25, 2021

The recycling depot located at the Mattress Recycling facility, 1046 - 4th Avenue, will be closed until further notice.

 

November 24, 2021

In light of the forecasted precipitation, anyone wishing sandbags and to fill them can make arrangements by calling District Hall at (604) 869-5671. We are open from 8.30 AM to 4.30 PM daily.

 

From Mayor Peter Robb,

We continue to monitor current weather reports from Environment Canada and adjust our plan as needed. Our staff are constantly checking our high risk sites to record and react to any changes.

Both rivers have receded to normal November levels.

You can help our community by being prepared with your own emergency kit. Do you have a small bag packed with clothing ,food and water for 3 days, flashlight for power outages and prescriptions you may need?

As you and the District of Hope prepare for any new weather events, staff continue to address our needs around recovery. Our MP Mark Strahl met with us yesterday to be updated on our current situation and future plans.

 

November 22, 2021

Disaster Financial Assistance

On November 18, 2021 the Province of BC released that Disaster Financial Assistance (DFA) is now available for eligible British Columbians in southwest, central and southeast areas of the province and Vancouver Island who were affected by flooding and landslides from Nov. 14-16, 2021.  Once declared, the DFA program may compensate applicants for essential uninsurable losses.  The link below will provide the process for individuals, small businesses, farms and charitable organizations:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-management/preparedb...

Donations for Food, Supplies and Financial

Donations of food, supplies and any financial donations should be directed to the Red Cross:  https://www.redcross.ca/
At this time the District of Hope is no longer taking any food or supply donations.
 

November 20, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

The continued patience and community spirit displayed by our local community and surrounding First Nations remains incredible.  This is important not only to support each other now, but also as we transition into the longer-term recovery phase of this event.  Council and I have been working closely with Staff and our Emergency Operations Centre throughout this event.

The District of Hope’s situation is improving. With the opening of Highway 7, resupply to food stores has been arriving and other than eggs or milk, no critical shortages are noted.  In fact, this situation should return to a more or less normal state next week.  So, it remains that we should continue to avoid purchasing more than we need.  As a result, food distribution for those directly affected by the flooding will be transferred to the Hope Food Bank after today.  For more information, please contact Hope Community Services at (604) 869-2466.

Food and supplies have been, and will continue to be diverted to our regional small communities and First Nations to assist with their needs.  This is being coordinated through the Fraser Valley Regional District.

Local fuel supplies remain a concern and we have been working with Provincial authorities to work with commercial suppliers to prioritize fuel deliveries to the District Hope.  There is still fuel here but we need to be careful to not waste any.

District of Hope staff continue to address our needs as we move through to recovery.  In particular the creation of a long-term infrastructure and public space recovery plan.  We should have no doubt that this will take time and money.  Our intention is to make use of any forthcoming disaster relief funding as made available by the Federal and Provincial Governments.

 

Food Distribution Centre Update

Just a reminder that the food distribution centre is scheduled from 10am to 6pm.  and it may have to close early if stocks run out more quickly than expected.

 

November 19, 2021

From Mayor Peter Robb,

As per my recent letter to our residents, it is nearly impossible to thank everyone for their support and assistance throughout the actual weather event and now moving through to community recovery operations. I would however like to add our surrounding First Nations neighbours, BC Ambulance, Fraser Health, and the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure. No doubt there will be many more to come.

 

November 18, 2021

Food Distribution Centre Opening

A food distribution centre will open for those hosting stranded travellers or those in need as a result of the recent weather event. It will be at the Hope Recreation Ice Arena tomorrow at 8.30am until 7.30pm.

Saturday November 20, 2021 the food distribution centre will be open from 10am to 6pm.

 

From Mayor Peter Robb,

We have just come through one of, if not our largest community emergency situation in recent memory. Our community came together as I knew it would.

As your Mayor, I’m very proud of how many members of our community stepped up to help us in so many ways. From housing, feeding, and giving comfort to over 1200 unexpected guests, you made all the difference. A very special thanks needs to be made to those who opened up their homes, volunteered their time to attend and work at the Reception Centres, and donated items like bedding, food, etc. We should all be very proud of their community spirit and concern for the public good. However, support continues to be needed as we still have a significant number of guests who cannot yet go home.

We are not in a dire situation. Despite some road and water course erosion, seepage, and overland flooding in low level areas, there were no major infrastructure failures. Fortunately, we did not declare a local state of emergency as we did not need to order evacuations. The District is now in the recovery stage of this event. We are working diligently and effectively with the Federal and Provincial Governments, along with community organizations to get back to normal and establish travel back into and out of Hope. It is highly evident that other hard hit communities need Provincial and other resources more than we do.

There are so many organizations that require thanks and I apologize in advance if I miss a few. These include:

School Division 78 – their administration, staff and families
District of Hope staff and their families
Our faith community
CN Rail along with VIA Rail
Trans Mountain along with their contractor Kiewit
Emil Anderson Construction
Hope Fire Department
RCMP
Hope Search and Rescue
Local businesses
Local service clubs

Appreciation to all who helped, and continue to do so, never seems to be enough. When you reflect on what the community just experienced, my hope is that you appreciate your neighbours and this community even more.

 

Recovery Operations

The District has now initiated community recovery operations after this intense weather event. The vast majority of people trapped in our community have been evacuated via the limited single-lane opening of highway 7 west and the train pick up we organized last night. There is still however, a significant number of people remaining in Hope who are not headed west.

Food and fuel supplies are limited in quantity. We ask residents to not purchase more than they need or normally would. Please rest assured that work is going on to establish priority resupply of food and fuel being brought into Hope.

District services remain limited. District Hall, along with the Transfer Station are open. Waste collection services will be restored as soon as highway road space becomes available.

Reception Centres for trapped individuals are in the process of scaling down and closing. Home placement for the very few remaining individuals is ongoing.

The Recreation Centre is open on a limited basis only. For more information, please call them on (604) 869-2304.

Road conditions and closures remain unchanged. For updates, please visit www.drivebc.ca.

The District will provide further updates as they become available. Due to current Internet limitations, if you need further information, please call us on (604) 869-5671 or come to our front desk.

 

Showers

The Hope Rec Centre has opened their washroom and shower facilities only for emergency community use from 8am-8pm.

Please come to the Conference Centre entrance at the back of the facility which is located at 1005 6th Ave.

If using the showers please bring a towel.

If any community members would like to donate towels, shampoo, or liquid soap, please come to the Conference Centre door and deposit items in the bins provided outside.

 

November 17, 2021

EVACUATION UPDATE

At 5:00pm, Hwy 7 will be OPEN to single lane, piloted traffic, westbound only for stranded travellers in Hope.

NO COMMERCIAL VEHICLES (Exception up to 1 ton trucks)

In addition, CN Rail will have a passenger train in Hope arriving at 6pm and departing again at 7pm, direct to VIA Rail Station in downtown Vancouver as an option. Est. travel time 4-4 1/5 hours.

Parking will be available in 6th Avenue park (1005 6th ave.) but you are reminded it won't be secure and there is no timeline for anyone able to return east. Crated pets only accepted in the baggage car.