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Fresh flooding prompts new evacuations in Abbotsford, B.C., as water spills in from Wash. state

Reference: CTV News

ABBOTSFORD, B.C. - The Nooksack River in Washington state has overtopped its dike, and the City of Abbotsford is expecting floodwaters to cross the U.S. border, Mayor Henry Braun said Sunday afternoon.
As of 4 p.m. along Boundary Road, waters were already pouring out of Whatcom County fields and onto the Canadian side of border. By 5:30 p.m., the Nooksack had entered minor flood stage, according to the U.S. National Weather Service, but hadn’t yet peaked.

Hundreds of farms and homes sit within a couple kilometres of the line, including the Dykman Cattle Company, where Cynthia Dykman told CTV News late Sunday there were a lot of frayed nerves.

Her husband, Ted, said he was once again preparing to move their 300 calves to higher ground.

The mayor said the city is expecting flooding on Sunday to be less significant than the floods that inundated the Sumas Prairie last week.

However, the city remains "extremely concerned" about the continued risk of flooding as more rain falls on Sunday and more is forecast for the coming week, Braun said.

"The land is super saturated," he said. "None of that water (from the Nooksack) is going into the ground. That's coming straight over like a surfer on top of the water that's there. It'll come here a lot faster than in the previous event."

Dykman, who has experienced three Nooksack floods in 20 years, said it typically takes about four hours for floodwaters to travel the 10 kilometres from Everton, Wash., to their farm.

She said she’s watching the storm drain at the foot of their driveway for a warning sign the waters are coming up.

Meanwhile, Shawn Hystek, who also lives on the southwestern edge of Sumas Prairie, said he was heartened to see the military out running dump trucks, adding gravel to raise dikes and stacking sandbags in low-lying spots along roads.

And he added that no matter what happens overnight, or how high the water goes, the community will pull through together.

“After the first one that we just went through here, (we saw) how strong the community is and people coming together and people helping each other,” Hystek said.

On Sunday evening, a mudslide prompted evacuation orders and alerts near Sumas Mountain.

Units 12 through 18 at 2842 Whatcom Rd. were ordered to evacuate, and several properties on nearby Sandringham Drive were put on evacuation alert, according to Abbotsford police.

Earlier in the day, heavy rain and snowmelt crossing the border from the U.S. triggered fresh flooding in Abbotsford and prompted a new evacuation order for the city's Huntingdon Village area.

The floodwaters could pose "immediate danger to life safety," warns the order, which affects the area of Huntingdon Village bordered by Sumas Way on the west, A Street and 2nd Avenue on the east, Farmer Road on the North, and the U.S. border on the south... Read More