ontario news watch

Flood risk prompts call for volunteers to fill sandbags in Yukon

WHITEHORSE — The Yukon government is calling for volunteers to fill sandbags in two areas where a flood warning has been issued, while evacuation alerts are in effect elsewhere due to rising water levels.

It says sandbagging stations are accessible around the clock in the Southern Lakes and Lake Laberge areas for which a state of emergency has been declared.

Volunteers are being asked to bring a shovel, water and other supplies to be self sufficient and preferably work in pairs to fill sandbags while maintaining COVID-19 rules in the territory where infection rates have been climbing.

The risk of flooding has prompted closures of boardwalks in Carmacks, as well as a pedestrian bridge and tenting sites in Marsh Lake and a campground in Tagish.

The government is recommending local traffic only in all flood-impacted areas to ensure the safety of the public and first responders and to minimize any interference with flood mitigation efforts.

Last week’s high temperatures accelerated snowmelt at high elevations, raising river levels in some areas and prompting high streamflow advisories for the Yukon River at Carmacks and at Whitehorse.

Evacuation alerts are in place for areas of Tagish, Marsh Lake and the Lewes River Road in Whitehorse.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 11, 2021.

The Canadian Press