Okanagan boaters warned about risk of damaging lakeshore properties with high water levels - InfoNews

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Okanagan boaters warned about risk of damaging lakeshore properties with high water levels

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June 04, 2020 - 5:30 PM

With high water levels in many of the Okanagan's lakes, the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations Centre is asking boaters to drive slow in order to avoid causing damage to property.

Most area lakes are now above full pool including Kalamalka, Wood and Okanagan Lakes.

“With the warmer temperatures and ‘cabin-fever’ some residents may be experiencing as a result of COVID-19 physical distancing requirements, we are seeing more people out enjoying lake activities,” said Sandra Follack, operations centre program coordinator, in a press release. 

“Over the next several weeks during freshet while lake levels are high, boaters and those using personal watercraft are asked to keep their speed down when approaching or travelling near the shore. Please reduce your wake activity in order to prevent shoreline erosion and be on the lookout for floating debris that is carried into area lakes from faster flowing tributaries.”

The provincial heath officer's guidelines still applies to boats. For more information and details, visit the BC Centre for Disease Control's website. Note that some boat launches may be closed for safety reasons. 

Area lake levels continue to rise, and residents are encouraged to monitor lake levels for areas historically at risk of lake flooding or wake damage, according to the news release.

READ MORE: Is your Okanagan home at risk of flooding? There's now a website to help you figure it out

Creek levels are also fluctuating. Those living near creeks, streams and low-lying properties that have experienced flooding and high water in the past are responsible for having an emergency plan and the tools and equipment to protect properties from possible damage. People and pets should away from creek banks, which may be slippery or subject to erosion throughout freshet season, according to the news release.

READ MORE: Kelowna's Mill Creek spills over its bank, flooding apartment building, houses

In the event of an emergency and activation of the Central Okanagan Emergency Operation Centre, find the latest information online, on Facebook, Twitter and through email updates.


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