Residents along the Bulkley River in the Smithers area remain on evacuation alert according to Duncan Malkinson, from the Town of Smithers, due to ice jams, especially in the Ebenezer Flats/Dohler Flats areas.
“Right now the ice jam is stable due to the extremely cold temperatures, but that could change at any time,” Malkinson said.
“Residents need to be checking the Regional District Bulkley Nechako (RDBN), and Town of Smithers websites for updates, and be prepared to evacuate quickly should any changes occur.”
Open water can be seen running in a small channel in the Dohler Flats area of Smithers, but for residents of Ebenezer Flats, the ice jam is completely across the river, and can be heard cracking and popping along the riverbanks.
In case of notification of an alert, residents should be prepared for evacuation by:
Locating all family members or co-workers and designate a safe meeting place outside the evacuation area should an evacuation be called while family members are separated.
Having essential items readily available for quick departure including medications, eyeglasses, valuable papers (e.g. insurance), immediate care needs for dependants, and if you choose, keepsakes (photographs, etc.).
Preparing to move any disabled persons and/or children.
Moving pets and livestock to a safe area.
Arranging to transport your household members or co-workers in the event of an evacuation order. If you need transportation, please call Emergency Management BC at 1-800-663-3456.
Arranging accommodation for your family if possible. In the event of an evacuation, Reception Centres will be opened if required.
Monitoring news sources for information on evacuation orders and locations of Reception Centres.
Further information will be issued should the situation change.
Use extreme caution along the Bulkley River and other bodies of water;
Stay off riverbanks;
Follow guidance prescribed by the Town or Provincial authorities;
Refrain from travelling through areas impacted by flooding.