Prepare now for spring flood risk (freshet)

News Article


The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) is reminding residents and property owners to begin preparing for spring freshet. Now is the time to take appropriate measures to protect your property and buildings from potential rising waters and drainage issues. Taking proactive measures and assessing your property and buildings before freshet can help prevent or minimize potential damage.

The River Forecast Centre has issued a High Streamflow Advisory for the South Interior, which includes the Okanagan watershed due to above-normal temperatures forecast through this weekend. High flows, including potential flooding is possible. Residents are reminded to stay clear of high flow rivers and creeks, and if you see flooding, contact the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456, or in case of an emergency, call 9-1-1.

As warmer temperatures are forecast, spring melt has begun. Now is the time to prepare if you live in vulnerable areas, on or near floodplains within the RDOS, or if you have previously experienced flooding. Please see the links below or contact the RDOS for current information about freshet conditions throughout the region. The Regional District has activated various sandbag centres across the region, which can be viewed at If you require sand and sandbags within your community, please call the RDOS Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) at 250-490-4225 (during office hours) or email

Emergency preparedness also includes establishing plans to ensure your family and pet’s needs are considered before an unexpected event occurs. Pre-planning will help your family cope with the stress of dealing with an Evacuation Alert or Order.

In British Columbia, property owners are responsible for taking the necessary steps on their property to protect their home and property from flooding, while government emergency programs focus on broader flood response measures. Visit to learn more about flood response and the environment.

For further information, please visit the RDOS EOC website or contact Sean Vaisler, RDOS Manager of Emergency Services.


Mark Pendergraft, Chair
Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen

Sean Vaisler
RDOS Manager of Emergency Services

Erick Thompson

RDOS Communications



RDOS Communications
Toll Free 1-877-610-3737


Definitions you should know 

  • Flood Warning: River levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers will result.
  • Flood Watch: River levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bankfull. Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur.
  • High Streamflow Advisory: River levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but no major flooding is expected. Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible.

Helpful links

Current sandbag locations

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