Graph shows how the amount of water flowing under the Overlander Bridge in Kamloops is already peaking.

North Thompson River should peak this weekend; South Thompson to follow

Spring freshet not too severe in this area

  • May. 30, 2018 12:00 a.m.

Michael Potestio – Kamloops This Week

The B.C. River Forecast Centre was expecting to see a 30-centimetre rise in the water level of the Thompson rivers last weekend.

“[It’s] not really getting up to major flood stage, but as it’s quite full, we’re quite sensitive to any kind of rain, so we’re still a bit ahead of the peak here and I think we need to get over the hurdle of that first before we stand down on the flood risk concern,” said river forecast centre head David Campbell.

READ MORE: Assessing flood risk in Thompson River basin (Mar. 24, 2018)

He said the North Thompson was expected to peak last weekend and the South Thompson should crest this week unless there is significant rainfall.

After rising significantly throughout May, the measurement of the river elevation at Overlanders Bridge tapered off last week, hovering around the 343.5-metre mark.

Campbell said hot weather across the province in the last few days has produced a high snow-melt rate.

“In the order of 30 to 50 millimetres a day, which is about the highest rates we’ve seen this year for those upper elevation sites,” Campbell said, noting an estimated 30 to 60 per cent of snow packs at upper elevations have melted off and the flood risk has shifted to watersheds that drain fromm higher elevations like the Thompson rivers.

With river levels high, the Thompsons remain susceptible to rainfall, which isn’t in the forecast for Kamloops in the next week, although temperatures are expected to remain in the 30-degree range.

© 2018 Kamloops This Week

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