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British Columbia

Weekend downpours in southeast B.C., raise flood concerns for Fairmont Hot Springs

FAIRMONT HOT SPRINGS, B.C. — An evacuation alert has been issued for more than 200 homes and businesses in southeastern British Columbia as a weekend downpour and the likelihood of more rain raise the potential for flooding in the Fairmont area.

The Regional District of East Kootenay issued the alert late Monday for 229 properties in the Fairmont Hot Springs and Cold Spring Creek areas about 100 kilometres north of Cranbook.

A state of local emergency has also been declared around Fairmont.

More than 40 millimetres of rain fell in the area between Sunday and Monday, swelling creeks and filling debris traps along the river systems, raising potential for a damaging debris flow.

The regional district says residents in the alert area should gather papers, medications and other important items and be ready to leave on short notice.

Tonnes of rock, mud, trees and debris surged down Fairmont Creek in 2012 forcing more than 350 residents to flee, and a smaller flow happened last year on both Fairmont and Cold Stream creeks.

But officials say damage was not as bad due to construction of debris traps and other extensive work along both waterways. 

The Canadian Press