More storms hit flood-ravaged British Columbia

Environment and Climate Change Canada warns that more rain is expected in British Columbia this week and will likely affect areas still recovering from last week’s floods.

Warning preparation meteorologist Armel Castellan said a “parade of storms” is expected during the fall and winter in the province.

“The future forecast for the south coast is very wet,” he said. “We are preparing for a record drop in terms of overall precipitation figures for communities along the central and southern coast.”

While the province will likely not see the same amounts of rain as last week, he said there is a strong indication that active storms will begin on Thursday.

He said the department predicts another river called atmospheric, which will take advantage of subtropical heat and humidity. He said it is expected to bring 40 to 70 millimeters of rain in the Fraser Valley and potentially more than 100 millimeters in the North Shore Mountains around Howe Sound.

Castellan said the department has regularly informed Emergency Management BC about the storms and their possible effects.

“When there is a parade of storms or an incredible fall, as we have done since mid-September with more than 200 percent normal rainfall, the soils are very saturated and too much moisture immediately creates a runoff problem,” he said. He said, adding snowmelt caused by falling and rising temperatures during winter could also create additional problems.

He said dry summers have also changed the landscape of the province, but the link between wildfires and landslides is “very conceptual at this point” and will require forensic and geomorphological analysis.

Earlier Monday, Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said the federal government is working with Environment Canada to develop a classification system for atmospheric rivers, which would help the province better understand potential risks.

“(Atmospheric river) is obviously a new term that I think most of us are now getting familiar with and they have a ranking system in the states that will allow us to prepare more effectively,” he said.

‘Parade of storms’ expected in British Columbia: Environment Canada. #Floods #BC #atmospheric river #Storm parade

Farnworth said he was told the system would be rolled out in January, but Castellan said a launch date for an alert system has not been confirmed.

“The atmospheric scale and rating system is exciting, but it’s just not quite ready and it would be irresponsible to get it out before it is,” he said.

This Canadian Press report was first published on November 22, 2021.

This story was produced with financial assistance from Facebook and the Canadian Press News Fellowship.

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