Maple Ridge ‘kept taps running’

Wires down, power out, sewage could have backed up

  • Sep. 10, 2015 8:00 p.m.

Streets were closed

Maple Ridge fire, police and public works were kept hopping Aug. 29 when a wild storm with winds of up to 100 km/h walloped the West Coast.

Public works crews answered 180 calls relating to downed trees, power outages and live wires on the ground.

Russ Carmichael, director of engineering operations, told council Tuesday that 11 trees fell on to houses in Maple Ridge.

As for the Maple Ridge Fire Department, it received 75 calls in a 12-hour period compared to an average of about a dozen calls a day, deputy chief Howard Exner added.

However, there was only one car crash, when trees at 116th Avenue crashed down on to a moving vehicle and two parked cars.

With no electricity as a result of widespread outages across Metro Vancouver, there was no power to pump out the sewage stations. That required crews to move mobile generators from station to station in order to keep them pumped out.

“A lot of stuff you didn’t see, but at least we kept the taps running,” Carmichael said.

Carmichael agreed with the theory that the extensive damage from the storm was caused by drought-stressed trees in full foilage in soil recently softened by rain were easily blown down by the wind.

Council watched a video clip of live wires dancing with sparks across a road while bystanders ignored firefighters.

But even wires that are not sparking could be live and give a fatal shock. And trees that contact live wires can also carry electricity, Exner said.

Eight major intersections were also without traffic lights, although back-up batteries kept them operating for some time after the power went out.

One of the most severe threats came when power was cut to the city’s communications tower at the top of Thornhill, although that went to backup power.

Public works has since printed out more road signs that will be placed to warn the public when live wires are across a road.

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

Pitt Meadows woman arrested after violent car robbery in Richmond

The woman along with a 28-year-old man from Delta arrested in Vancouver

Four officers at Maple Ridge’s regional prison charged with assault

Case in Port Coquitlam court adjourned until February.

Medical causes behind death in Memorial Peace Park

Happened early Saturday in downtown

People asked to report any cougar sightings in east Maple Ridge

WildsafeBC asks people to keep attractants in

Pitt Meadows council allows electronic attendance

Members of the public opposed, veteran councillors say change is not new

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

South Surrey mother didn’t have the intent to kill her daughter: defence

Closing submissions in case of Lisa Batstone underway

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

Parole granted for drunk driver who killed B.C. RCMP officer

Kenneth Jacob Fenton will be able to attend alcohol abuse treatment, nearly three years after crash that killed Const. Sarah Beckett

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Most Read