Langley – Township of Langley residents and businesses within the flood plain along the Fraser River remain on Evacuation Alert, as warming temperatures and rapid melt of the snow pack in the upper Fraser continue to cause the Fraser River to rise.
Door-to-door Evacuation Orders could be issued in areas unprotected by dykes if the Mission Gauge reaches 6.3 metres and conditions in the field warrant, and in protected areas when it reaches 7.5 metres. Should conditions warrant an evacuation, impacted residents and businesses will be asked to leave for their own safety.
On May 15, the Mission Gauge reached 5.5 metres and the previous Advisory, issued on May 11, was heightened to an Evacuation Alert for those properties in the unprotected areas, warning that there is a potential imminent threat to life and property and asking people to prepare to evacuate on short notice.
Approximately 260 properties – including homes and businesses – in the unprotected flood plain areas of Northwest Langley and Glen Valley, as well as Brae Island and McMillan Island, are on Evacuation Alert.
On Friday, May 18, at 3:00pm, the water level at Mission Gauge was recorded at 5.9 metres and was expected to rise to 6.0 meters by the end of the day. Based on the latest predictions from BC River Forecast, it is anticipated that the water level at Mission Gauge could reach 6.4 metres by May 21, at which time Township staff will assess conditions in the field, and if warranted, issue an Evacuation Order for the affected areas.
Should evacuation be required, those affected will be hand-delivered notices by emergency responders and information will be shared on social media platforms.
The Langley Emergency Operations Centre is activated at a Level 1, and monitoring the situation with all response agencies. Should evacuations become necessary, the Township will activate its Information Hotline at 604.514.HELP (4357). Recorded messages will provide regular updates to keep residents informed on the situation and what is to be expected.
The Township has a comprehensive Flood Response Plan that has been updated based on prior years’ experiences, and includes regular dyke inspections and monitoring of the water levels provided by federal and provincial agencies.
The Township of Langley’s Flood Response Plan considers the readings at the Mission Gauge to determine the threat of flooding and action that should be taken by those potentially impacted.
Every spring, Township residents and property owners within the Fraser River floodplain are issued letters reminding them to be prepared in the event of flooding. This year, the letters were issued on April 9 and the Township enacted its Flood Response Plan on May 4.
Updates and maps outlining the areas impacted by the freshet are available on the news section of the Township of Langley’s website at tol.ca/news/freshet-update. Updates are being provided through Facebook and Twitter (@Langley Township) or by subscribing to the Township’s email notification system. Sign up at tol.ca/notifications to have updates delivered to your inbox.
New information will be issued as the situation changes.
General information on flood response and preparation, and links to gauge readings and other information provided by provincial agencies, including procedures for those seeking assistance, is available at tol.ca/floodresponse.