PHOTOS: Kelowna residents frustrated after Mill Creek floods homes

A resident of an apartment building on Rowcliffe Avenue looks over the flooded entryway of his building on May 7, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
One person on Marshall Street decided to have a little fun and go fishing on the flooded roadway. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
Police blocked off Marshall Street between Buckland Avenue to Rowcliffe Avenue as crews pumped water out of the road on May 7, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
Mill Creek running high below a residential bridge on May 7, 2020. That same bridge was completely underwater two years previous during 2018 floods. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
Sandbags in the back of a truck as Pacific Court residents combat early morning flooding on May 7, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
Residents of Capri Gardens placed sandbags around their building’s entrance after early morning flooding on May 7, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)

Residents in several Kelowna neighbourhoods are cleaning up and filling sandbags after Mill Creek burst its banks in the early morning hours of May 7.

The city attributes the flooding to heavy rainfall on Wednesday and debris blocking creek flows at various points along Mill Creek.

While debris has since been cleared and the flow is dropping in the creek, several residents are still working to ensure their homes are safe.

RCMP closed Marshall Street between Rowcliffe and Buckland avenues for much of Thursday morning and said they have been assisting residents in the area since 6:30 a.m. after the water subsided in the Pacific Court area.

Residents living on Marshall Street are working together to sandbag their properties. Although the Brookville Care Centre on Marshall isn’t flooded, sandbags line the street, and a neighbour dropped off donuts for residents who are unable to leave the home.

The apartment building at 543 Rowcliffe has been severely impacted by the flooding. Crews are pumping water out of the main level as units filled with water. Several surrounding buildings had their parking garages flood.

Those living up the creek in a flooded apartment on Pacific Court said police and fire crews arrived in the area around midnight but didn’t notify residents of nearby complexes until much later.

One resident of Capri Gardens said it was 2 a.m. when emergency crews knocked on their door telling them their building was flooded with water.

“Insurance won’t cover this because it flooded last year and in 2017,” said one man.

Water has substantially subsided around Pacific Court since midnight, however, sandbags remain in place.

A resident living on Lindahl Street said the flooding was nowhere near as bad as years past, however overnight flooding fell on the same day as two years ago.

“Blockages can cause flooding in unpredictable areas and that’s what we saw this morning. The risk remains low for widespread flooding; however, localized flooding is still possible in the event of heavy rain,” said Alan Newcombe, the City of Kelowna’s divisional director of infrastructure.

Bulman Road was also impacted by flooding.

Crews worked overnight to clear debris from creeks as rainfall and debris were collecting under private footbridges in the area. City crews are monitoring Mill Creek from Kelowna International Airport right down to Okanagan Lake.

The city said indications are that mid-elevation snowpack is already in significant decline and the risk for general flooding is low.

The area around Mill Creek is notorious for flooding. In 2017 , evacuation orders were put into place for some 90 multi-family units, four single-family homes, and one commercial property in Kelowna.

There is currently no evacuation order from the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations although there are some reports people were forced out of their homes overnight.

READ MORE: Kelowna city planners want to ban drive-thrus to reduce GHG emissions

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