May 2017 Flood Event
Friday, July 14, 2017 - Flood Recovery Update
The water level continues to recede and is now at 342.804 metres above sea level, which is approximately 32 cm above full pool. Full cleanup of public beaches and public areas affected by flooding is ongoing; however, all public beaches, including the boat launch, are now open. Please respect all areas marked off as ‘do not enter’ as hazards may exist. In all cases, those using beaches and public spaces affected by flooding should be aware that submerged hazards such as pieces of docks may be present, and caution should be exercised.
For private property affected by flooding, District of Summerland representatives have started visiting those properties to gather details about which properties require assistance with removing sandbags. While every effort is being made to remove sandbags as quickly as possible, the process will take time, as there are estimated to be 200,000 sandbags throughout the community. As such, the patience of those requiring assistance with sandbags removal is appreciated.
For those who are able to do so, sandbags can be taken to any of the 8 bins located throughout Trout Creek and Lower Town, or to the Summerland landfill, at no charge.
Sandbags must not be emptied onto beaches, into the lake, or within the high water mark. Any sand deposited into or adjacent to lakes, streams, ponds, or other water sources is in contravention with the province’s Water Sustainability Act and is a reportable offence. Sand used in sandbags is not of the same quality of that used on beaches; it may not be locally sourced and may contain invertebrates, fish eggs, or parasites that can do harm to our local aquatic ecosystems. Please report any violations by calling 1-877-952-7277 (RAPP) or #7277 on cellphones, or online at www.for.gov.bc.ca/hen/nrv/report.htm
For those with debris from the floods such as broken docks or branches, the RDOS is organizing the pickup of non-natural debris (docks) from properties who register the debris at www.rdos.bc.ca/news-events/eoc/debris-feedback-form. Please note that only non-natural debris registered at this site will be removed. Non-registered debris will not be removed, nor will any natural debris (i.e., branches). Natural debris is considered yard waste and can be disposed of at the Summerland landfill at no charge.
For any questions or concerns related to flood recovery, please call the District of Summerland’s flood recovery line at 250-486-3765.
Friday, July 7, 2017 - Flood Recovery Information update
The water level of Okanagan Lake is continuing to decrease. Over the past few days, the lake level has decreased by approximately 2cm per day. The District of Summerland has started to implement recovery efforts although a further decrease is required before all flood protection measures can be removed.
The tiger dam at Powell Beach has been removed and staff have initiated clean up of the area. The beach is open although the ground water in the surrounding area is still high. Rotary Beach, the pier, and the boat launch at Peach Orchard have now been opened. Users are reminded to exercise caution as water levels remain above normal and submerged debris could pose a hazard. The spray park will remain closed until lake levels decrease further as it cannot function properly with the high ground water.
The process of removing the approximately 200,000 sandbags in place throughout the Summerland waterfront has begun. Property owners are reminded not to distribute sand from sandbags into or adjacent to lakes, streams, ponds, or other water sources. This is in accordance with the province’s Water Sustainability Act. Sand must not be added to beaches.
To assist with the removal of sandbags from private property, residents have three options:
- Large disposal bins have been placed at Peach Orchard Beach Park, Landry Crescent, near the campground at Trout Creek, Powell Beach Park, Wharf St. Beach Access, Nixon Road at North Beach Access, Butler Street near the lift Station, Lakeshore N. beach access and Crescent Beach. Filled sandbags may be deposited into these bins, and unfilled bags may be placed beside them. The District will empty the bins as they become full.
- Residents may also choose to deposit sandbags at the front of their property if they are not on the roadway or blocking any access to property. If residents choose to leave the sandbags at the front of their property, they will be picked up but it may be a few weeks before crews are available for removal. Anyone who wishes the bags to be taken away immediately should deposit them into the large bins as noted above.
- The District of Summerland is in the process of contracting crews to pick up and remove sandbags from individual properties. Over the next week, a site assessment contractor will visit lakefront properties to determine if assistance is required with the removal of the sandbags. The contractor will estimate the number of bags onsite, note the accessibility of the property and request permission from the owner to access the property for sandbag removal in preparation for the removal.
If there are any questions regarding the recovery process for the flood event, please call the District of Summerland’s Flood Information line at 250-486-3765.
Friday, June 30, 2017 - Flood Situation update
The water level continues to recede and is now just over 343.0 metres. This still far exceeds "full pool".
The District of Summerland is continuing to plan for sandbag removal. All sandbags, whether on private or public property, will be removed by the District (with property owners' permission to access). Removal will not begin until the lake level goes down further and risk of flooding due to a storm event is mitigated. Over the next week, a site assessment contractor will be visiting all properties to determine accessibility, number of sandbags, etc. so that the plan for removal can be finalized. The removal and disposal of the sandbags is a large undertaking as there were nearly 200,000 bags distributed in Summerland.
Also - over the next few days, large waste disposal bins will be placed in eight locations in Trout Creek, Lower Town and Crescent Beach areas. Property owners may deposit full sandbags in these bins if they wish to dispose of bags before crews are able to get to their property.
Property owners are reminded not to distribute sand from sandbags into or adjacent to lakes, streams, ponds, or other water sources. This is in accordance with the province's Water Sustainability Act. Sand must not be added to beaches. The District of Summerland is currently testing the sand from sandbags to ensure it is not contaminated. Such uncontaminated sand may be used as lawn dressings, etc as long as it is not used adjacent to water sources.
The District has received inquiries from individuals wishing to pick up sandbags for use away from water sources. Beginning Tuesday, a number of excess filled sandbags will be available for pickup at the Arena parking lot (self serve, available as supplies last).
We expect to post more details as the removal plan is finalized. Thanks to everyone for your patience!
Friday, June 16 3:00 pm - Flooding Situation update
Today's lake level is 343.205 m. The water level has continued to drop slightly however unexpected weather changes could still affect the level and the current water level is high enough that significant damage is possible with high wind events.
The District of Summerland has re-opened Rotary Beach. Anyone using the beach is reminded to exercise caution. District staff have flagged submerged pilings however swimmers should be aware that there may be unexpected debris in the waters. Please respect the closure of the pier.
The province has confirmed that they will be providing financial support to local governments for the removal and disposal of sandbags from residential properties. More information on this program will be provided by the District of Summerland in the coming weeks. At this time, the primary focus should continue to be on the protection of properties from the high water level. Sandbags must not be moved until the water levels drop significantly and further direction is provided by the District of Summerland.
Many property owners in Summerland have incurred expenses related to Okanagan Lake flooding and the District has received numerous inquiries regarding the province's Disaster Assistance Program. Information on the program can be located by searching "Disaster Financial Assistance BC" or following the link below. The phone number for the Disaster Financial Assistance program is 1-888-257-4777. Residents are encouraged to register with the program and to provide details at a later date when the full extent of damages are known.
Wednesday, June 14 10:00 am - Flooding Situation update
The water level this morning was 343.22 m. This is a very small decrease from the previous level.
The State of Local Emergency for the Trout Creek area and the Summerland Yacht Club have been rescinded. The State of Local Emergency was declared in late May due to electrical disconnections affecting properties and the safety risk associated with the electrical system exposure to the high waters.
All residences in the Trout Creek area have been reconnected to the electrical system. Water levels in the underground electrical junction boxes are being closely monitored to ensure that there is no risk to public safety. Electricity has also been restored to the boat slips at the Summerland Yacht Club.
Although the State of Local Emergency has been lifted, the need to exercise extreme caution around lakeshore areas remains. Property owners should inspect all armouring installed to protect from the high water on a regular basis.
Tomorrow's weather forecast calls for strong winds coming from the southeast. Wind speed is predicted to be 30kph (gusting to 50kph) and expected to begin around noon. Residents are reminded to be prepared and watch closely for breaches in sandbagged walls or other armour. During the previous south wind event, a number of properties faced a breach in their sandbagged walls and threatened structures with flooding. In the case of an emergency situation, call 9-1-1.
Monday, June 12 5:00 pm - Flood Situation update
Today's lake level remained at 343.25 m. It has been fluctuating between 343.23m-343.25m since early last week. Rising ground water continues to be an issue for many properties.
The tiger dam at Powell Beach incurred a number of tears over the weekend from wave action against the structure. District staff have been repairing those tears and continuing to pump low lying areas.
The District of Summerland has received a number of inquiries regarding the process for recovery once the flooding subsides. The District is currently collaborating with the RDOS and other communities impacted by the flooding on Okanagan Lake in discussions with the province. It is hoped that we will have assistance with removal and disposal of all sandbags. Once such plans are finalized, information will be provided to all affected properties. Please do not remove any sandbags or other armouring until further information is released.
We have also had inquiries regarding the quality of water. Staff sampled the water last week at District beaches and tests have come back within a safe range for swimming. Weekly testing will continue. Please be reminded that all residents should exercise caution around all lakefronts. Submerged structures and unsecured debris can pose a threat for anyone near or in the water.
Friday, June 9, 2017 8:00 am - Lake Level and Sandbags
The level has remained consistent over the past few days.
Sandbags will be available at the Arena parking lot today between 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm. The crews require extra time this morning to fill bags as yesterday's wind storm required use of all the stockpiled bags.
Thursday, June 8, 2017 5:00 pm - Lighthouse Landing
Important notice for residents of Lighthouse Landing area whose power is currently disconnected:
The District of Summerland is working to move the primary junction box above ground to allow the electricity to be reconnected in your neighbourhood. In order to connect power safely, an electrical inspection must be performed in each home prior to connection. The District has contracted an electrician who will be conducting these inspections beginning Friday morning. The Electrician will provide an affidavit to the District stating that the house safe to connect. It is important that the District makes contact with each property prior to the Electrician’s site visit to provide further details regarding the electrical inspection.
If you are one of the affected properties, please contact 250-486-3765 asap.
Thursday, June 8, 2017 8:00 am - Status Update
The current lake level is 343.235 m. This level has remained relatively stable over the past few days. Summerland's Electrical crews will begin working on restoring power to the Lighthouse Landing area this afternoon and tomorrow. The District is hopeful that the connections for this subdivision can be successfully brought above ground and that electricity may be reconnected to the residences that continue to be without power. Updates will be provided as crews progress.
Filled sandbags will be available at the Arena parking lot between 11:00 am - 4:00 pm today and tomorrow. The District now has two sandbagging machines and a full crew, therefore it is not expected that there will be a backlog today.
Tuesday, June 6, 2017 3:00 pm - Status Update
The lake level did not increase today – in fact, it actually decreased very slightly since yesterday and is now 343.225 m.
The flows in the creeks which come into Okanagan Lake are down substantially and this should have a positive influence on the lake level.
The Province continues to recommend that residents protect their property to 343.50. The latest weather forecast indicates that the area may receive substantial rain Thursday-Sunday this week. Heavy rains could influence lake levels.
The District of Summerland has received a number of inquiries relating to the safety of the lake water for swimming. Summerland's sanitary sewer system has not been compromised during these high waters and the District is not aware of any other issues that would make the lake unsafe from a public health perspective. If individuals are planning to swim, extreme caution should be taken as there is substantial debris and unknown hazards which may be submerged under the high water. The District generally begins testing the water after the Spray Park opens, however, due to the concern expressed, staff will begin testing tomorrow morning. Results should be available by Friday.
The sandbagging machine and crews continue to work and have caught up to the backlog experienced yesterday. Filled sandbags will be available for pickup for Summerland residents between 11am-4pm until Friday afternoon.
Inquiries regarding the flooding event should be directed to 250-486-3765.
Monday, June 5, 2017 5:00 pm - Status Update
There was no increase in Okanagan Lake level today. The level remains at 343.23 m. Flows into the lake from creeks are starting to decline which should have an impact on lake levels although the Province is still recommending that properties be protected to a level of 343.50 m (plus 0.5 m for wave action).
There was a large demand for sandbags today. The sandbagging machine and crews will be working all week. Sandbags can be picked up from the Arena parking lot between 11:00 am - 4:00 pm tomorrow through Friday. Please note that the District will limit the number of pallets taken on each trip to ensure that everyone gets some. The District expects that the lineups for sandbags will diminish as the week progresses.
District staff have erected "Local Traffic Only" signage in Trout Creek and along Lakeshore Drive to Crescent Beach in an attempt to reduce the traffic coming through these areas.
Construction crews will be working along Lakeshore Drive (to Crescent Beach) tomorrow as they will be shoring up the banks of the lake with rip rap to protect the integrity of the road.
In Trout Creek, crews will continue to work on pumping accumulated water out of the very low lying areas tomorrow. Work will continue on reinforcing the beach access areas to stop water from flowing onto the roadways and onto other property.
Electrical crews are continuing to explore options to restore power to properties still disconnected. We will notify property owners as soon as we determine whether a solution can be identified.
District staff will visit properties identified as most prone to flooding tomorrow to ensure that sufficient preparations have been taken and to discuss other questions residents may have.
Residents who are displaced because of flooding are reminded to call Emergency Support Services at 250‑462‑0823.
If you have incurred costs to protect your homes from the flood waters, you may be eligible for Disaster Financial Assistance. This is a provincial program and more details can be found by following this link.
General inquiries regarding the flooding should be directed to 250-486-3765.
Sunday, June 4, 2017 5:00 pm - Update: Increase in predicted high level for Okanagan Lake
As expected, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources (FLNRO) has updated their prediction for the expected high level of Okanagan Lake. FLNRO now recommends that residents prepare for an Okanagan Lake level of 343.5 metres by mid June. Residents should also ensure that protective measures include an additional buffer for wave action.
In communication received this afternoon, the ministry states that “With the ever decreasing snowpack at higher elevations, the rate of rise on Okanagan Lake is slowing down. However, the lake level continues to exceed historic highs, and levels could increase more sharply with a significant rain event. For that reason and for planning purposes, local governments and private property owners should work to protect their properties to a lake level rise of up to 343.5 metres.”
The District of Summerland is analyzing the impact of this water level and will identify additional areas that may be affected by this new information. The District will begin to take measures to protect to this recommended level beginning this week.
This morning’s water level was 343.23 m. The new predicted level is 0.27 metres (11 inches) higher than this morning’s level. With wave action factored in, it is recommended that residents prepare for a level of 344.0 m which is 0.77 m (30 inches) higher than this morning.
The sandbagging machine will be located in the Arena parking lot tomorrow (Monday) through Friday this week. Residents may pick up filled sandbags after 11:00 am tomorrow. The sandbag machine is capable of making up to 1,500 bags with the assistance of the Ministry of Forests Fire crew, Summerland Fire Department and District of Summerland employees.
The District of Summerland saw a significant improvement in the flows at the Wastewater Treatment Plant late last week after requesting residents not to pump water into the sanitary sewer system. It is imperative that property owners continue to ensure that sumps pump directly into the lake, channel or ditches rather than into the sanitary sewer system to avoid complications at the Wastewater Treatment Plant.
People who do not live in Trout Creek are asked to refrain from driving through. There is an increasing amount of water on the streets and residents are struggling to keep up with the protection of their properties. Individuals are on the street sandbagging and it is becoming dangerous with the additional traffic. In addition, please respect closure of public beaches, right of ways, pathways, etc.
More information will be available tomorrow once a complete assessment and mitigation plan is complete. If you require further information, please contact the flood support line at 250-486-3765.
Sunday, June 4, 2017 10:00 am - Flood Situation update
Today's Okanagan Lake level is 343.23 m. The lake level has increased 4 cm since Friday. The Province continues to predict a high lake level of 343.25 m although the District of Summerland expects that this will be adjusted today given the most recent lake level increases. The District will post new information about predicted lake levels at 5:00pm tonight.
The prefilled sandbags that were available at the Arena are now all taken. Empty bags are still available at the Firehall and sand piles located throughout the lakeshore areas are stocked.
The District of Summerland will have the sandbagging machine back on Monday. It will be here for the week. Prefilled sandbags may be picked up from the Arena beginning at 11:00 am tomorrow (Monday). With the continuing increase in lake levels and risk of wave action, some residents still require help to adequately protect their homes. If you have the opportunity, please offer your assistance!
Summerland crews are working in Trout Creek as there have been some issues with water build up and catch basins which require plugs. Crews have pumped some areas and it is expected that the standing water in Powell Beach will be pumped later today and tomorrow. Further work will be done with the assistance of the Ministry Fire Crews tomorrow to increase the armouring of susceptible public areas.
If you have inquiries, please contact 250-486-3765.
Friday, June 2, 2017 11:30 am - Flood Situation Update
Today’s lake level is 343.19 m. This is an increase of 2 cm's since yesterday.
A limited number of filled sandbags will be available at the Summerland Arena over the weekend. Please only take sandbags that you will be using to protect homes and structures. District staff may not be on site at the Arena, however filled bags are there and may be picked up as needed.
Residents who are using sump pumps are asked not to pump water into the sewer system. Sump pumps should be pumping water directly into the lake. The flows through the Sewer Treatment Plant have increased significantly because of excess water entering the system and there is some risk that capacity of the system will be reached if measures are not taken to reduce these flows. Residents who require assistance with their sump pumps or suggestions on how to redirect flow into the lake are asked to call 250-486-3765 and arrangements will be made for a staff member to meet with you.
Crews are continuing to monitor underground electrical junction boxes. As previously reported, fourteen (14) properties have had power disconnected because of the danger arising from submerged connections within the underground vaults. Currently, it does not appear that any additional connections within junction boxes are in imminent danger of full submersion, however a number of these boxes are showing some signs of water infiltration. These are being closely monitored and residents will be notified directly if it appears that the water levels inside are increasing.
The District of Summerland is currently reviewing the high lake level projections made by the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) and will determine whether the current predicted high level of 343.25 m continues to be realistic or whether the District and residents should be preparing for potentially higher lake levels. More information will be posted over the weekend.
Wednesday, May 31, 2017 Evening Update - Flooding
A State of Local Emergency has been declared for 13209 Lakeshore Drive, Summerland (Summerland Yacht Club). Rising water levels have caused safety issues within the electrical junction boxes which supply power to a building located in the southeast corner of the property and the docks at the Yacht Club.
Yesterday, the District of Summerland declared a State of Local Emergency in the Trout Creek area east of Highway 97 due to the impacts of the high water level in Okanagan Lake. Nine properties had their electricity disconnected due to safety concerns however no evacuation order was issued. Some property owners have remained in their homes and others have decided to evacuate. Property owners who have chosen to evacuate their home are encouraged to contact Emergency Support Services (ESS) for assistance. ESS can be reached at 250-462-0823.
The District is closely monitoring the situation and will advise any additional residents should their properties become affected. Residents in the Landry Crescent and Randall Street area should be aware that there is concern that with a further increase in lake levels, the electrical system providing service in this area may become compromised creating the need to disconnect power.
Unfortunately, the District was informed today that lake levels are expected to continue to rise. The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) have now predicted that the high level may reach 343.25 m by June 10th. This does not include an additional 0.6 m (2 feet) that should be factored in for wave action. The District of Summerland understands that the uncertainty and changing predictions is frustrating for residents in low lying areas. Summerland staff are actively engaged in discussions with the province regarding the need for the most accurate projections possible.
If the lake levels continue to rise, more widespread impact and possible evacuations, especially in the Trout Creek area, may be required. Residents are encouraged to take all necessary measures required to protect their homes and structures from the rising waters. Filled sandbags will be available at the Arena between 9am-5pm Thursday, June 1st and Friday, June 2nd.
For up to date information, residents should continue to monitor the Summerland’s website or the District’s Facebook page. If you require further information please contact 250-486-3765.
May 30, 2017 7:30 pm - State of Local Emergency for Trout Creek area (East of Highway 97)
The District of Summerland has declared a State of Local Emergency for the Trout Creek area (East of Highway 97).
This declaration is required because of the impact of the rising ground water on Summerland's electrical system. In some isolated areas, water has now reached elevations high enough to submerge the electrical connections in underground vaults and junction boxes. Although the electrical cabling is rated to be submerged in water, the connections are not. If water reaches the electrical cabling at these connection points, there is a risk for the water in these structures to become electrified. This groundwater extends to the surface where contact could be made, creating a public safety risk that must be mitigated.
Electricity will be turned off immediately to the noted properties. District staff is currently attending each property to discuss the situation with the affected residents. At this time, an evacuation order is not in effect; residents may determine whether to leave or stay. Emergency Support Services will be available for those leaving their homes.
The properties affected include:
- 880 Johnson Street
- 892 Johnson Street
- 5827 Dale Avenue (under construction)
- 5849 Dale Avenue (under construction)
- 5853 Dale Avenue (under construction)
- 5861 Dale Avenue
- 897 Lighthouse Landing
- 908 Lighthouse Landing
- 906 Lighthouse Landing
- 902 Lighthouse Landing (under construction)
- 898 Lighthouse Landing
- 894 Lighthouse Landing
- 514 Wharf Street
As announced earlier today, new predictions from Forests, Lands and Natural Resources (FLNRO) suggest that Okanagan Lake water levels will continue to increase another 10 cm above today’s level. District staff is updating mapping to determine implications of this increased level. A Flood Communications Centre will be open at municipal hall beginning Wednesday morning and more information will be made available to residents and businesses affected. It should be noted that with continued rising water levels, ground water is also rising therefore issues affecting municipal utility infrastructure such as the electrical system are expected to become more widespread.
May 30, 2017 2:00 pm - New High Lake Level Projections
The District of Summerland has received updated lake level projections from the Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resources (FLNRO) today. Okanagan Lake is now predicted to rise to 343.21 m. This is an increase of 10 cm (4 inches) over today’s level.The previous predicted high was 343.15 m.
Residents in flooded areas should be aware of the risks associated with rising water levels on their property. Extreme caution should be exercised around electrical services which potentially have been impacted by the high water level. District crews are out assessing water levels around electrical infrastructure this afternoon to determine if actions are required to mitigate any risks.
With the increasing concern and impact on residents and municipal infrastructure, the District of Summerland will be opening a Flood Communication Centre at Municipal Hall to coordinate information and resources. The centre can be reached at 250-486-3765 and residents are encouraged to check the District of Summerland Facebook page for up to date information.
There is a high likelihood that an Evacuation Alert or a Declaration of a State of Local Emergency will be required for low lying properties in Summerland. More information will be available tomorrow as District crews are assessing the implications of the new information and determining what infrastructure and property is at risk should these new levels be reached.
The District of Summerland is also looking at possibilities for additional flood mitigation measures in the areas most prone to flooding. Residents are encouraged to continue to protect their homes and structures – keeping in mind that projections for high water are now at 10 cm higher than today’s water level.
May 28, 2017 2:00 pm - Filled Sandbags Available for pickup Monday at the Arena
Today’s lake level is 343.05 m. This is 10 cm (4 inches) from the predicted high level of 343.15 m.
Residents are encouraged to continue to reinforce their property against flooding and are reminded to factor in wave action (up to .6m) when determining where to place sandbags for protection.
The District of Summerland will have the sandbagging machine (on loan from the Province) available again tomorrow (Monday, May 29th). Crews will be filling bags and property owners can come to pick up filled bags for their own use. The sandbagging machine will be located at the Arena.
There will also be limited capacity to deliver to residents who require additional sandbags to protect their house and structures (not to protect beach only). If you are not able to pick up bags from the Arena and would like to request that sandbags be delivered to your property, please contact 250-486-3765 after 8:00 Monday morning. Properties will be visited by District staff and a priority list for delivery will be established.
For those residents picking up sandbags at the Arena, the bagging will begin approximately 9:00am. The crews will be bagging all day – approximately 1500 bags are made each hour.
If you know anyone who requires more sandbags to protect their residence, please help spread the word that filled sandbags will be available tomorrow at the Arena.
May 26, 2017 1:30 pm - Update on Lake Level Predictions
The District of Summerland has received information that Okanagan Lake levels are expected to rise higher than originally predicted due to anticipated high temperatures forecast for the coming days. The increase could be up to 10 cm (4 inches) higher than the current 343.05 m prediction.
Lakefront property owners are encouraged to assess their situation and ensure that measures have been taken to protect houses and structures on the property. Some sandbags may need to be moved – if bags were placed too low on the property or placed to protect beachfront rather than the home – property owners should consider redeploying these bags to higher grounds.
Over next few days, staff will be revisiting properties that the District has identified as the most susceptible to flooding. They will put in a new stake illustrating a 343.15 (possible new high level) - 343.75 m (expected high including factor for wave action) height.
Summerland staff are currently gathering further information on predicted lake levels and preparing additional mapping to identify properties that will be affected by such an increase in the lake level. More information will be posted as it is available.
May 24, 2017 4:30 pm - Flooding
Today's lake level is 342.94 m. The predicted high water level has been increased to 343.05 m (additional 5 cms from original prediction). An extra .6 m should be added to this if the property is subject to wave action. The high level is expected to be reached on Sunday -- however, a higher than usual water level will likely remain until mid-late summer.
Yesterday's wind event caused damage to many properties. The District of Summerland has temporarily closed Rotary Beach until an assessment of the damage is complete and it is deemed safe to swim. At this time, there are unseen dangers under the surface of the water resulting from the damage to the docks. Rotary Beach will be reopened when District staff can stabilize the current situation.
A bladder dam has been erected at Powell Beach to protect municipal infrastructure and surrounding area from rising water. The beach and parking lot are closed. The high water table has saturated the parking lot from below and the asphalt has now become unstable.
Property owners are encouraged to take adequate precautions to protect their residences from the predicted high water. Empty sand bags are available at the Fire Hall and sand is still available in multiple locations throughout Summerland.
Sand bags are now being distributed on a priority basis -- it is critical that these bags are used to protect homes and infrastructure. Supplies of sand bags from the Province are becoming more difficult to attain therefore please only request them if there is need to protect your buildings.
There has been a rise in water level in the creeks over the past 24 hours and staff are monitoring the creeks and dams very closely. Please be cautious when near any fast moving water.
May 23, 2017 2:00 pm - Volunteers Requested
Summerland Fire Crews and Ministry of Forestry fire crews are bagging sand with the sandbagging machine at Powell Beach. These filled sandbags have been delivered to many properties; volunteers are still needed to help those property owners who are not able to move their bags into place on their own. If you are able to assist, please come down to Powell Beach by 4:30 pm and let us know.
May 23, 2017 8:30 am - Sandbag Machine
The District of Summerland has a sandbag filling machine arriving on loan from the Province this morning (Tuesday, May 23) along with 10 Ministry firefighters to assist filling the bags. The machine is capable of filling 1600 bags per hour.
Volunteers are needed to help distribute the bags to critical areas most susceptible to flooding should the lake rise to predicted levels. Some property owners have not been able to adequately protect their residences due to age, physical limitations, etc. If you are able to assist today, please go to POWELL BEACH PARK in Trout Creek at 9:00am (or anytime you are available) where the machine will be set up. If you would like further information, please contact 250-486-3765.
May 21, 2017 10:00 am - Status Update
Lake levels have increased slightly from yesterday -- the current level is 342.82 meters which is approximately 18 cm (7 inches) from the predicted high level.
A District of Summerland representative is continuing to visit residents and conduct site assessments on properties most susceptible to flooding, and crews will begin putting in the survey stakes to provide a visual means of determining where the high water mark will be.
Residents are encouraged to take appropriate precautions to protect their property. Sandbags are available at the firehall and sand is available in many locations along the lakefront. Some property owners require assistance with sandbagging-please help out where you can.
Further update will be provided as conditions change.
May 19, 2017 10:00 am - Status Update
As predicted, Okanagan Lake levels have continued to rise. The lake rose 2 cm from yesterday putting the level at 342.76 metres this morning. This is 24 cm (9.5 inches) from the predicted high level of 343 m.
The predicted high level remains at 343.0 m. If you are in an area that is susceptible to wave action, an additional .6 m should be factored in (343.6 m). Over the next few days, District staff will be putting in survey stakes in various locations along the lakeshore to mark the 343.0 m mark. These stakes will be useful for establishing the best location for sandbags and to determine where protection may be required. Elevation mapping confirms that the Trout Creek area is the most susceptible to more widespread flooding.
Over the weekend, a District representative will be engaged to contact residents on low lying lakefront properties. The representative will provide information and discuss whether desired precautions to protect from the predicted high water levels have been taken. They will also ask whether the property owner would like a survey stake on their property to identify the predicted high water mark – property owner permission to do this is required. If permission is given, over the next few days, as schedules allow, the survey crew will put the stake in.
The District of Summerland has renewed its supply of sandbags and will keep sand piles stocked over the weekend. The sandbags are available at the Fire Hall located at 10115 Jubilee Road. Please only request the number that you can fill and come back if you need more them rather than taking too many to start. Please remember that the predicted rise is 24cm (9.5 inches) from the current lake level – this is vertical rise not the length from the water on the beach.
The District will erect sandwich boards in multiple locations which will contain contact information, lake levels and any other relevant information.
Over the long weekend, the District will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates as changes occur. Should lake levels rise enough to cause concern of widespread flooding, an information centre will be opened at the District office.
The District of Summerland received a good response from individuals, service groups and organizations who will be willing to volunteer should assistance be needed. If you are interested in adding your name to the list, please contact the District by phone at 250-494-6451 rather than leaving a message on social media as we need to gather some information from you for the list.
Residents in the low lying areas are reminded to check their basements/crawl spaces for ground water. Of particular concern is the possibility of water coming into a house via the electrical system conduit. Electrical panels of these homes should be monitored regularly.
Some Summerland amenities including the pathway at Landry Crescent, Centennial Trail along Peach Orchard Road and the path from Rotary Beach to the Peach Orchard Boat launch are closed due to high water levels.
If you have questions, contact the District of Summerland at 250-486-3765.
Wednesday, May 17 - Call for Volunteers
As noted earlier today, lake levels are expected to rise over the coming days. Today's information indicate that the levels will rise an additional 11 inches from current levels with an additional buffer for wave action of 2 feet. The predicted level is 343.6 meters (including the buffer); current actual level is 342.73m. It is expected that these high levels could be reached by the middle of next week and remain until mid-June.
The District of Summerland would like to compile a list of volunteers willing to assist if the lake levels continue to rise and the threat of flooding increases. Such assistance may include filling sandbags for property owners not able to accomplish this themselves, assisting the District in protection of infrastructure, etc. If you or your organization are interested in having your name added to this list, please contact the District at 250-494-6451.
Property owners in areas that will be subject to flooding should the lake levels reach predicted levels will be contacted directly over the next while to determine whether precautions have been taken and whether assistance is required. District crews will ensure that sand piles are replenished in the areas that are running low. Additional sand bags are available from the Fire Department.
Wednesday, May 17 - Flooding in the South Okanagan
Attention has shifted to Okanagan Lake levels as there are considerable amounts of upper level snowpack which has yet to melt and warmer weather is predicted over the coming days.
As of yesterday afternoon, Okanagan Lake level was measured at 342.7 meters – which is 17 cms above full pool. New predictions suggest that the lake may rise to 343.6 meters.
If normal temperatures with little or no precipitation prevail over the coming weeks, the lake will have time to fill gradually and water will drain without reaching the predicted highs. However, preparation for flooding at low lying areas adjacent to the lake must be made in the case that the predicted levels occur.
The District of Summerland is currently preparing mapping which will identify properties most at risk should the predicted levels occur. These properties will be contacted and more information will be available. District staff is also currently assessing risks to public infrastructure and prioritizing the measures that can be taken as precautions.
To date, approximately 18,000 sandbags have been distributed in Summerland. All existing sandbags should be left in place and residents are encouraged to continue protecting property.
The conditions for high levels in the Okanagan lakes and creeks within Summerland are expected to last well into June. Regular updates and more information will be available later in the day today.
Thursday, May 11 - Sandbags Available
Sand will be available at the following locations by 11:00 this morning. Please use as needed to take necessary precautions for threats of flooding.
- Powell Beach
- Rotary Beach
- Butler Liftstation, north side (near Lakeshore Dr and Butler St)
- Stonor Street beach access
- Wharf Street beach access
- Nixon Roach beach access
- Landry Crescent, west of 8900 block
- Lakeshore Drive, 18000 block on west side
- Lakeshore Drive, 17000 block on east side
- Peach Orchard Beach boat launch
- Crescent Beach
- Wharton Street/Kelly Avenue Lot (downtown)
- Garnet Valley Road
Sandbags are available at the Firehall (10115 Jubilee Road W).
Wednesday, May 10 - Potential Flooding in Summerland
The District of Summerland is experiencing higher than usual water levels in creeks and waterways throughout the municipality and has experienced some localized flooding in the Garnet Valley area.
On Tuesday, District crews and equipment were used to create a berm on the banks of Aeneas Creek near the intersection of Garnet Avenue and Tingley Street as the elevated water levels caused the creek to breach its bank and pose danger to the surrounding community.
This situation was resolved, however concern remains regarding high creek levels and potential flooding over the next while. Residents should be aware that a State of Local Emergency will be declared if a flooding situation arises which poses an imminent threat or hazard to the health, safety or welfare of residents and/or action is required to limit potential damage to property. A State of Local Emergency provides the District of Summerland with special regulations which allows for access to private property when public safety is threatened.
Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement. The forecast calls for warm, sunny weather with a few showers early Thursday with the risk of a severe thunderstorm potentially resulting in 15-25 mm of rain later in the day. This weather situation combined with spring snow melt will lead to rising water levels and may increase the risk of flooding.
Okanagan Lake is currently experiencing high levels and is considered full. The levels are expected to rise over the next while which could cause flooding. Summerland residents with property bordering Okanagan Lake are encouraged to take precautions and be prepared in the event this occurs. Lake levels are being monitored and information will be provided as received.
The District of Summerland will be delivering sand to various locations throughout the District and sandbags for filling are available at the Firehall (10115 Jubilee Road W). Sand is currently available at the Wharton and Kelly lot and additional locations of sand will be provided as they are determined.
If rising water levels which could potentially cause widespread flooding are observed, call 9-1-1 immediately. If a situation develops that you feel should be assessed by District staff, please call 250-486-3765. Residents are encouraged to monitor the Summerland Facebook page (summerlandBC) for the most up to date information should further flooding occur.
PreparedBC website contains information which residents may find helpful. This can be found at
If losses are encountered due to flooding, residents may be eligible for assistance through the Disaster Financial Assistance program. Information on this program can be found at: