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Updated: Water ban remains in effect after mine tailings breach; waterways affected outlined by CRD

   - Photo submitted
— image credit: Photo submitted

UPDATE: 4:48 p.m.

The water advisory to not drink water in the Quesnel Lake, Cariboo Creek, Hazeltine Creek and Polley Lake areas remains in effect and is extended to include the entire Quesnel and Cariboo Rivers systems right to the Fraser River.

Consumption by people and livestock is not recommended. Boiling will not help. Swimming and other activities along the rivers are at your own risk.

This alert will remain in place until current test results are completed and further information is available.

For accurate and up to date information, please visit the Cariboo Regional District`s Emergency Operations Facebook page at facebook.com/CRDemergencyoperations or the CRD website at cariboord.ca.

A public information line has been established at 250-398-5581 during Emergency Operations Centre operating hours.

UPDATE: 1:41 p.m.

The Cariboo Regional District has received the following information from the Helicopter reconnaissance taken this morning.

A small amount of debris backed into Polley Lake. The main slurry flow went down Hazleton Creek where it meets Quesnel Lake.

The slurry and a large debris pile appear to be stationary at this point. Hazletine Creek was originally about four feet wide and is now up to 150 feet wide.

Waterways affected by this event include Quesnel Lake, Polley Lake, Hazeltine Creek and Cariboo Creek. Additionally the Horsefly Likely Forest Service Road (Ditch Road) has been washed out at Hazeltine Creek. The Likely Bridge is not affected at this time.

A water-use ban remains in place and includes recreational water activities, bathing, and drinking etc. Everyone in this area should use bottled water until further notice.

For accurate and up to date information, please visit the Cariboo Regional District’s Emergency Operations Facebook page at facebook.com/CRDemergencyoperations or the CRD web site at cariboord.ca.

A public information line has been established at 250-398-5581.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

ORIGINAL STORY

The Cariboo Regional District has been apprised of a breach of the Mount Polley Mine tailings pond and as a result a complete water ban has been issued for the waterways near the mine site.

This includes all recreational water activities, bathing, drinking and so on. This order is in effect until further notice.

The CRD is working with the RCMP, Emergency Management BC, Central Cariboo Search and Rescue, Mount Polley, Interior Health and other associated agencies to determine the extent and possible impacts of the breach.

A helicopter reconnaissance is underway and further information will be released as it becomes available. A public information line in the CRD Emergency Operations Centre has been established at 250-398-5581.Cariboo Regional District

People living in, or travelling through the affected area are advised that a complete water use ban is in effect until further notice. This includes water recreational activities, drinking, cooking, bathing etc. Only use bottled water until further notice.

For accurate and up to date information, please visit the Cariboo Regional District’s Emergency Operations Facebook page at facebook.com/CRDemergencyoperations or the CRD web site at cariboord.ca.

A public information line has been established at 250-398-5581.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

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