More inclement weather could complicate the situation in British Columbia

Further weather conditions could complicate the situation in British Columbia

MISE & Agrave; DAY

Rain, snow and strong winds will cross British Columbia starting Monday, complicating the situation in the province which has been in a state of emergency since the flooding of last week .

A special bulletin was issued by Environment Canada for the interior regions of the province regarding a depression. “Southerly or southwestern winds of 40 to 50 km/h gusting up to 70 to 80 km/h are expected. These winds could blow away loose objects, or break small tree branches. The strong winds will ease this evening, “the federal agency said.

On the coast, 5 to 10 millimeters of rain were expected Monday and 10 to 15 overnight.

The Fraser Canyon area, where the municipality of Merritt is located, which was evacuated in recent flooding, is reportedly affected by snowfall from the afternoon. 25 to 30 centimeters are planned in total. Coastal regions will be exposed to gusts of southerly winds, which could blow up to 110 km/h.

The new bad weather comes as the town of Abbotsford, one of the municipalities that has suffered the most damage, has made progress in repairing dyke breaches. “If 100 millimeters fall in 24 hours, that's a problem, a big problem, because the water will cross the border,” said Abbotsford Mayor Henry Braun, in an interview with Global News.

Other “atmospheric rivers”

During an Environment Canada press briefing Monday afternoon, meteorologist Armel Castellan explained that two new “atmospheric rivers”, a phenomenon characterized by an influx of humid ocean air causing intense precipitation, would hit the province by the end of the week.

On Thursday and Friday, one of them will release between 40 to 70 millimeters of precipitation. This figure could even rise to 100 millimeters in some areas.

The second atmospheric river is expected to hit the country during the weekend. The meteorologist preferred not to advance on the precipitation forecast.

Heavy rains last week weakened areas that were already vulnerable, especially due to forest fires. According to the expert, as much rain fell in 24 hours as it usually does for the entire month.

Weather phenomena of this magnitude are extremely rare. According to Mr. Castellan, there should not be more than one per century.

However, with global warming, these storms are likely to be more and more frequent.

< p> “If the storms are close together, the risk is greater and the soils are more likely to be saturated,” said Mr. Castellan.

The authorities are considering how to put in place, for atmospheric rivers, an alarm system similar to that for hurricanes.

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