Flooding in Downtown

Updated April 21, 2020 5 pm

Overnight both the Smoky River and Heart River broke up and are now flowing freely into the Peace River. As anticipated, there was a rise in water levels in the Peace River but below alert stage levels. The Heart River right now is absorbing runoff from the hills from the remaining snowpack and will be running high and fast for a few days. We are monitoring it both in Town and upstream but ask that residents avoid the Heart River.
After Saturday’s flood, Pat’s Creek is continuing to flow well through the culvert. As with the Heart River, Pat’s Creek is expected to absorb runoff from the remaining snowpack upstream over the next few days. We are continuing to monitor the creek both in Town with the culvert and upstream with Northern Sunrise County including using the Town’s drone to fly over the Pats Creek basin.
As of 5 pm, today Town Council officially lifted the State of Local Emergency, which had been in place since Saturday evening to assist in flood response.
Whereas a State of Local Emergency exists within the Town of Peace River due to overland flooding of Pat’s Creek
And whereas the flooding has been resolved and conditions of emergency no longer exist,
Therefore, in accordance with s.23(1) of the Emergency Management Act, the Council of the Town of Peace River hereby terminates the State of Local Emergency for the Town of Peace River as of 5:00 pm on Tuesday, April 21, 2020.
Signed: Tom Tarpey, Mayor
Signed: Elaine Manzer, Deputy Mayor

Updated April 21, 2020 1:40 pm

In conjunction with the Peace River & District Chamber of Commerce, the Town of Peace River is conducting an impact survey for residents and businesses impacted by Saturday’s flood. This information will be delivered to the Government of Alberta to seek relief funds for those impacted. If you experienced any flood-related damages or costs please fill out this survey.

Survey link —> https://tinyurl.com/floodimpact

Updated April 20, 2020 4:55 pm

Clean up work is continuing downtown following Saturday’s flood. A number of barricades are still in place downtown as crews work to clean up the streets. As areas are cleaned and deemed safe for vehicle traffic the barricades will be removed. Please do not move barricades and do not drive around them.

99 Ave. from 101 St. to 98 St. remains closed as does 100 Ave. from Peace River Brewing to 98 St. The earth berm we used to channel water to Riverfront Park will start to be dismantled on Tuesday. We anticipate having all the barricades and the earth berm removed by the end of the day on Wednesday. The State of Local Emergency (SOLE) will remain in effect for another 24 to 48 hours as there is still a concern regarding runoff and the possibility of another surge of water and ice through Pat’s Creek. We are continuing to monitor the creek up-stream via regular drone flyovers.

As this is river breakup season we are also monitoring the Smoky River and the Heart River and are meeting daily with Alberta Environment and Parks and other agencies. Both the Heart and Smoky are expected to break up early this week. When that happens there will be ice flowing past the town and water levels in the Peace are expected to rise. While conditions currently don’t indicate any issues, it is always a good idea during spring run-off periods, to take appropriate precautions. We have some information regarding emergency preparedness on our website: https://peaceriver.ca/emergency-preparedness/

Updated April 19, 2020 2:27 pm

Alberta Health Services’ (AHS) public health inspectors have reached out to us. For foodservice businesses that have been impacted by yesterday’s flood, AHS recommends that you delay reopening until speaking with a local public health inspector. Inspectors will be available as of Monday, April 20 and can be reached by calling: 780-618-3401 or 780-618-3436.

Here are some additional resources provided by AHS:

Updated April 19, 2020 8:40 am

Since our last update on April 19 at 12:55am, crews have been working on water pumping throughout the night. Most of the water in Town has receded. Due to the success of the overnight pumping, we did not have to breach the dike, as we had originally anticipated. We still have one pump working – with others on standby – near Riverfront Park as we continue clean-up of debris on roads downtown.

Within the Town berms, temporary dams and road blocks will remain in place for at least 24 hours as we evaluate and assess. Road blocks have been pulled back from the Heart River Bridge and it is now possible to cross downtown from the Heart River to the roundabout via 101 St. However, several road blocks remain in place along main street and throughout downtown near Riverfront Park, access beyond those road blocks is restricted.

Business owners and residents who live in the impacted areas may return, please speak with the RCMP at the roadblocks. The general public are asked to avoid the area.

Updated April 19, 2020 12:55 am

Water levels have dropped somewhat in downtown. Public Works began preparing to breach the dike near the washrooms in Riverfront Park at approximately 12:20 am to assist the water pumping. This breach would allow water to flow out of downtown and into the river. The dike would be repaired immediately after the water has receded.

Updated April 18, 2020 at 10:20 pm

The Town of Peace River has declared a local state of emergency

Whereas an emergency exists in the Town of Peace River due to:

Flooding of downtown due to ice dam in Pat’s Creek

Therefore the Council of the Town of Peace River, pursuant to Section 21 of the Alberta Emergency Management Act declares that a state of local emergency exists in the Town of Peace River.

Signed: 9:44 pm on Saturday April 18, 2020
Signed: Tom Tarpey, Mayor
Signed: Elaine Manzer, Deputy Mayor

Crews are continuing to respond to a flood in downtown Peace River.

At approximately 8:30pm tonight Pat’s Creek Culvert started to overflow near Centennial parking lot. We suspect an ice jam in the culvert. The jam led to overflowing which has caused flooding near the 100 Ave. and 100 St. area of downtown Peace River.

The Town has called in contractors to assist and we are currently working to bring in tiger dams and earth berms to channel the water through the street towards Riverfront Park. Crews will then pump the water out of the park and into the river.

Residents are asked to stay away from downtown right now.

Original Post April 18, 2020 at 9:07 pm

We are aware of some flooding in downtown, public works, the fire department, RCMP, and town staff are on scene. At this time, we ask that everyone avoid the downtown area of Peace River. More info will be available as the details are known.