Fraser recedes, no threat of flooding

Local evacuation alerts lifted as river levels fall.

The River Forecast Centre has lifted its ‘high streamflow advisory’ for the lower Fraser River.

The River Forecast Centre has lifted its ‘high streamflow advisory’ for the lower Fraser River.

The flood threat in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows has all but dissipated along the lower Fraser as the river is expected to drop even further by the end of the week.

The B.C. River Forecast Centre ended its “high streamflow advisory” for the lower Fraser, from Hope westward, on Monday, saying flows will recede through the week as snow melts decline.

The river level at the Mission bridge dropped to 5.97 metres on Sunday.

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows kept their emergency operation centres on standby over the Canada Day long weekend, although evacuation alerts issued to homes and business outside dikes were lifted on Friday in both municipalities.

The high, fast-flowing water meant a few businesses that rely on the river were forced to shut down operations.

Northview Enterprises, a log sorting business near the Port Haney Wharf, stopped work last week, but didn’t lose any logs.

“We dodged a few bullets this year,” said general manager Gordie Boldt.

“Our capacity to work is around 25 per cent because we try to keep everything as close to the shore as possible. The further you work towards the middle of the river, the heavier the current is.”

Northview expects to deal with high water for at least another month.

Further east along River Road, Pacific Coast Cedar Products Ltd. prepared for the annual freshet by bringing in material before water started to rise.

“Where we were, there was no threat of flooding,” said manager Kathy Klassen,.

“We didn’t have to sandbag. We don’t get worried until it gets really high.”

Klassen, however, believes the district over-reacted to the flood threat.

“I almost think they go overboard a little bit. They could spend our money on something else.”

A temporary dike reinforcement, which was installed along Tamarack Lane near the pump station, will be removed sometime this week.

• Residents of Maple Ridge who have sand bags can empty the sand in their gardens or call the district’s works yard during office hours at 604-463-9581 to get them picked up.