THE PROVINCIAL government is paying the $620,000 cost of making emergency repairs to the District of Stewart’s diking system.
Work began over the weekend on the dike which protects Stewart from the Bear River.
The 3.5 km dike sustained damage in recent recent weeks after heavy rain brought up the level of the river and now faces additional risks of forecasted rain coupled with annual fall flooding.
In some areas, the water is a mere six inches from the top of the dike, says Stewart chief administrative officer Peter Weeber.
“This dike is critical for protecting the community from any flooding,” Weeber explained.
East of Stewart, the Bear River eroded sections of Hwy37A and damaged the Bitter Creek Bridge, cutting the community off from the rest of the region by road for more than a week.
News that Emergency Management BC was covering repair cost came Sept. 16 and crews were on site the next morning.
‘We’ve been working all weekend, organizing crews and putting together the project,” Weeber said yesterday. “It was a pretty quick turnaround, there were a lot of people who worked hard to put it together that quickly.”
Mayor Angela Brand Danuser said the support is critical to the safety of the community.
“With potentially heavy rains in the forecast we will be working around the clock to ensure our dike system is back to full strength.” Brand Danuser said.
Weeber hopes repairs will be completed by the end of the week.
“We have a fair amount of equipment and resources available to us right now,” he said.