Interior B.C. communities under water warning after truck crashes into river

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VAVENBY, B.C. - British Columbia's Interior Health authority is advising people who draw their water from the North Thompson River between the communities Avola and Vavenby to watch for signs of diesel fuel after a truck crashed into the waterway.

The authority says it is estimated that 800 litres of diesel fuel ran into the water after the semi-trailer's fuel tank was puncture in the crash on Monday night, Jan. 16.

Cleanup efforts began after the accident, and Interior Health is advising residents to monitor their water as a precaution along a 40-kilometre stretch downstream from the spill site.

The truck crashed into the river one kilometre south of Avola, northeast of Kamloops.

The health authority says residents should not use their water for drinking, showering, bathing or brushing their teeth if it smells or tastes like fuel.

The Thomson Nicola Regional District, which has the nearest affected water system downstream from the spill, was notified immediately and its water intake was closed.

Courtney Hesketh, manager of environmental health, said it could take two or three days for the river flow to dilute the diesel.

The health authority says the water system's operators are manually filling the reservoir and monitoring the situation.

It says the Avola community draws its water from Avola Creek, which is not affected by the accident.


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