UPDATE-HIGH STREAMFLOW ADVISORY JANUARY 3 2019

Flood Watch – Englishman River, Little Qualicum River

High Streamflow Advisory – South Coast and Vancouver Island (MAINTAINED)

ISSUED: 3:45 PM January 3, 2019

The River Forecast Centre is issuing a Flood Watch for:

  • Englishman River
  • Little Qualicum River

The River Forecast Centre is maintaining or adding a High Streamflow Advisory for the South Coast and  Vancouver Island including:

  • Central Vancouver Island (ADDED) – including Sproat River, Somass River, Port Alberni and surrounding areas
  • East Vancouver Island (ADDED) – including Parksville, Qualicum and surrounding areas
  • South Vancouver Island (ADDED) – including the Chemainus River, Koksilah River, Cowichan River and surrounding areas
  • Howe Sound – including the Stawamus River and tributaries along the Sea-to-Sky Highway
  • Sunshine Coast – including watersheds around Gibsons and Sechelt
  • North Shore – including the Seymour River and watersheds around North Vancouver and West Vancouver
  • Fraser Valley – including the Chilliwack River, and mountainous tributaries on the north side of the Fraser Valley
  • West Vancouver Island – including tributaries around Tofino, Bamfield, Port Renfrew and surrounding areas

An intense Pacific frontal system has stalled over south-west British Columbia, bringing heavy rainfall across the region. Rainfall amounts exceeding 150mm have been observed since yesterday on West Vancouver Island, and 60-100+ mm in Central Vancouver Island, Eastern Vancouver Island, Howe Sound and Lower Mainland.

Streamflow has been rising rapidly in response to this rainfall, with areas on Vancouver Island currently reaching or exceeding 2-year return period flows. The Little Qualicum River near Qualicum Beach (Water Survey of Canada gauge 08HB029) is currently flowing at approximately 210 m3/s (20-year flow).

Additional rises are possible later on Wednesday. For larger and lake-influenced systems, including the Cowichan River and Somass River, rises are expected into Thursday.

The River Forecast Centre will continue to monitor conditions and update this advisory as conditions warrant.

A High Streamflow Advisory means that river levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but that no major flooding is expected.  Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible.

A Flood Watch means that river levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bankfull.  Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur.

A Flood Warning means that river levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to the rivers affected will result.

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