Amid the anxiety of being trapped between landslides, there are pockets of hope for people helping each other and keeping spirits in Merritt, BC.
Created specifically for those stuck on Highway 7 in southwest British Columbia, a public Facebook group called Stuck at 7 details the poignant goodness sprinkled throughout a horrific 48 hours.
Parts of southern British Columbia have experienced more than a month of rain in two days, leaving thousands stranded on flooded roads, trapped between active landslides or leaving their homes.
Looking for diapers
Shannon Anaskan says she was on her way home to North Delta from Hope, BC when the landslide occurred. Her children, a three-year-old and a five-year-old, are with her.
“We have two sandwiches and three muffins and a diaper,” he said.
Located at the southern end of Highway 7, Anaskan said there are hundreds there with it.
He said he ended up asking for diapers on the Facebook group.
“This has been the scariest thing that ever happened to me. Last night I had an anxiety attack that caused my three-year-old son to have anxiety too. We are afraid, ”Anaskan said.
To ease their anxiety and distract themselves, their children have been playing games on their devices.
Waiting with children
Among those waiting on the road are Andrew and Renee Gluck. Located between Agassiz and Hope, the Gluck family has been there since 7:30 pm on Sunday night.
“We are in a good mood. We have food, we are using some containers to collect water outside and we are happy to be together as a family, ”said Gluck.
His two daughters are four and six years old. Gluck said his children are small and do not understand.
“It was like camping for them,” he said.
Search and rescue
Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said search and rescue teams looking for stranded drivers, as well as emergency response personnel to help with flood and sandbag reduction efforts, were already working in communities since the Vancouver Island to inland BC, but conditions were improving. get worse before getting better.
Good Samaritans, like Laura Ronson, a nurse at the scene, weighed in on the Facebook group, seeking to return a pair of boots that she had borrowed from someone else to help a family of four.
Facebook user Roger Alan Olmsted also offered his food, claiming to cook chicken and ribs.
Hope camp aware who was helping stranded travelers.
“The public power is not available. Our emergency power generator is working to maintain power in the Lodge, keeping staff and guests warm, safe and secure, ”the site wrote.
Several roads connecting the lower part of the continent and the interior of BC were also cut by rocks, mud and debris, including the closure in both directions of Highway 5 between Hope and Merritt.
According to Gluck, there were three helicopters on the way to pick up the 250 people, including 50 children.
Facebook user Nolan Scott expressed his appreciation in the group and offered to help where he could despite having little for himself.
“I have my 13-year-old son with me. We have 2 bottles of water, 5 yogurts and a half tank of gas … Unfortunately, we don’t have much to offer for the rest, ”Scott wrote. “If anyone needs a pair of hands to help with something, let me know!”
For people like Facebook user Andrea Heys, offering their home to strangers was something they didn’t hesitate to do.
“We have 1 furnished and 2 unfurnished bedroom in a basement suite. At least it’s a home where they can keep warm and I’ll feed the people too, ”Heys wrote.
With files from Steve McKinley, Lex Harvey, Alex McKeen, Mariam Nouser