Mudslide prompts city to issue warning
Localized flooding Monday evening led emergency officials and city staff to respond to Bloomer Creek, near Meadowlark Lane, in the Oglow subdivision, according to a press release issued by the City of Castlegar yesterday.
“On April 16, heavy rains and the runoff from a record high snowpack caused a private undersized culvert to surcharge causing localized flooding concerns,” the release said.
“City crews worked through the night to ensure the adjacent house was safe from eroding banks.”
The release went on to caution that creeks and streams are continuing to rise and see increased flows.
“Residents are advised to use extra care and attention around local creeks. Hikers and walkers should be aware that fast moving water may cause some creek bank erosion and creek bank edges may not be stable.
“Crews will continue to monitor trouble spots clearing culverts and other blockages that could lead to flooding. Anyone noticing a potential problem or a flooding concern is asked to call the Castlegar Fire Department at 911.”
In a phone interview yesterday, city CAO Chris Barlow said that, while the culvert is on private property, it was sensible and expedient for city crews to step in to a) protect a resident’s home and b) avoid potential problems should the silty debris make it into the city’s drainage systems.
“The remediation work is moving the silty debris that was deposited during a landslide in the same spot last spring and moving it to where it can’t remobilize, as well as clearing out some of the trees and wood debris.”
He also said the remediation work is taking place at a spot along the creek that is upstream of several other water licenses. As there is no intent to divert or change the course of the creek, but rather to stabilize the site of the landslide, it shouldn’t have any lasting negative impact on downstream residents.
In response to some confusion over the remediation having been completed last spring after the initial mudslide, city councillor Florio Vassilakakis provided an explanation.
“As reported at the last council meeting, we passed a resolution to move ahead with works just last week,” Vassilakakis wrote. “We only recently received all the approvals from the ministries March 29. (As well), most of the issue is on private properties and as such required discussions with the property owners.
“The engineers completed their assessment and the project went to an RFP. As mentioned above, the contract was awarded to Marwest on April 9.”