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Second round of flooding no longer expected for Grand Forks

Last Updated May 19, 2018 at 6:32 pm PDT

The height of flooding in Grand Forks earlier this month. Clayton Kube

People of Grand Forks will be able to relax this long weekend as flood risk diminishes

Officials working to ensure homes and businesses are safe before people are allowed to return

GRAND FORKS (NEWS 1130) – After a week of warnings about a surge in water levels, Grand Forks has received some good news- flooding is no longer expected this long-weekend.

“We were expecting a peak in the river systems, equivalent to what we saw last Thursday, Friday, which was a catastrophic event for us,” says Chris Marsh, Emergency Operations Director with the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary “That hasn’t happened, that’s no longer forecast for us.”

The 180 comes after homeowners used the week to protect their property, with the military coming in to lend a hand. Officials say cooler temperatures and rain in the forecast that didn’t end up arriving, is what made the difference.

“We’ve seen the river levels dropping on all of our rivers, the Kettle, the West Kettle and the Granby River, which were the rivers that caused us such issue last week,” says Marsh.

With the lowered flood risk, focus is shifting to assessing damaged homes and businesses.

“We have 20 teams of rapid damage assessment assessors who are out right now, primarily looking at homes where there’s either no or little damage.,” adds Marsh “We’re hitting the ground running on this as we really wanna try to get people back to their homes as quick as we can.”

About 1,500 people have been on an evacuation order since the city first flooded, over a week ago. Marsh says even when the evacuation orders are pulled back, homes will be placed under an evacuation alert because of the ongoing uncertainty.