Flood Watch: Howe Sound, North Shore Mountains, Sunshine Coast & Central, East and South Vancouver Island. Jan. 12, 2023.

The River Forecast Centre has issued a Flood Watch for:

  • Howe Sound, including tributaries around Squamish
  • North Shore Mountains
  • Sunshine Coast
  • Central Vancouver island
  • East Vancouver Island
  • South Vancouver Island

An atmospheric river is impacting coastal BC, with moderate to heavy rain anticipated through Thursday and into Friday. Precipitation totals of 15 mm to 60 mm have been observed since yesterday. Environment and Climate Change Canada have rainfall warnings in effect across the region, with rainfall totals up to 100 mm. Higher rainfall amounts are forecast over higher terrain. Temperatures are also rising, with freezing levels in the 1800 m to 2300 m range expected into Friday. This will contribute to additional runoff from snowmelt at mid-elevations.

Rivers are expected to rise through Thursday, with current peak levels anticipated on Friday and into Saturday. Weather forecasts currently have the heaviest rainfall anticipated in the North Shore Mountains, Howe Sound area. Weather forecasts and hydrologic modelling is indicating the potential for precipitation totals and river flows to reach or exceed 5-year return period values. Overbank flooding is possible at these levels.

The River Forecast Centre continues to monitor the conditions and will provide updates as conditions warrant.

A High Streamflow Advisory means that river levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but that no major flooding is expected.  Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible.

A Flood Watch means that river levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bank-full.  Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur.

A Flood Warning means that river levels have exceeded bank-full or will exceed bank-full imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to the rivers affected will result.