Flood evacuees in Grand Forks, B.C., could soon return home after Kettle River crests: official

Most of the hundreds of Grand Forks residents ordered out of their homes due to flooding could soon be allowed to return, after the Kettle River crested overnight.

On Monday, the regional fire chief said the Granby River was also believed to have already crested in the Grand Forks area.

It’s good news for residents who went through a devastating flood in 2018.

“Overnight we saw the rivers go down. Everybody was, I would have to say, elated to see the drop because this has been such a stressful period,” said Frances Maika, the information officer for the emergency operations centre.

“It’s kind of like post-traumatic stress from 2018. Seeing those rivers rise evokes a lot of anxiety in a lot of people so seeing them drop is great.”

When the damage is tallied, Maika expects there will be homes impacted by groundwater and one area has experienced serious bank erosion that may mean residents aren’t able to immediately return.

On Tuesday morning, roughly 300 people remained on evacuation order, down from an estimated 400 people on Monday.

Officials are aiming to allow as many people as possible to return home Tuesday.

“Discussion (Tuesday) morning is getting most of those people back home as soon as possible, that could be as soon as today,” Maika said on Tuesday morning.

“Some people it won’t happen for today because of where they are situated and there is still a lot of water flowing in or around their property, they don’t have access, or they’ve got erosion issues,” she added.

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