Metro Van issues evacuation alert for Barnston Island

Metro Van issues evacuation alert for Barnston Island

Residents near Maple Ridge told to prepare to leave if Fraser River rises further

Metro Vancouver has issued an evacuation alert for Barnston Island as the Fraser River keeps rising.

The alert went into effect at 8 a.m. Wednesday, and tells residents there to be prepared to leave if there’s a later evacuation order.

The evacuation alert is a precautionary measure – Barnston Island residents are not required to leave at this time, but are advised to prepare for the possibility of an evacuation order.

Access to Barnston Island is now restricted to residents, businesses and those with a family connection. Barnston Island Regional Park is also closed, Metro Vancouver said in a release.

Metro Vancouver staff are monitoring Fraser River levels as well as patrolling dikes and deploying sandbags. The BC River Forecast Centre, Environment Canada and Emergency Management BC continue to predict increasing river flows over the next several days, due to an especially early and rapid spring snow melt.

The Township of Langley issued an evacuation alert on Tuesday morning for flood plain areas of northwest Langley, Glen Valley, as well as Brae Island and McMillan Island after levels at the Mission gauge reached 5.5 metres.

Another update from the BC River Forecast Centre is due Wednesday afternoon.

Maple Ridge is also on flood watch, particularly in the Hammond area, near Kanaka Way, Tamarack Lane, north 224th Street and in Ruskin at 288th Street near the Stave River.

Residents of Barnston Island who have questions about the evacuation alert can contact Metro Vancouver’s Information Centre by phone, 604-432-6200, or e-mail, icentre@metrovancouver.org