Watch out if you’re walking along the path near the Chilliwack/Vedder River system this weekend.
The third storm predicted to hit Chilliwack by Saturday could mean an estimated storm total of 200 mm of rain by the end of the weekend.
The Vedder River was still at fairly low levels on Thursday, making it seem innocuous to anglers and other river users.
“But it will become a chocolate-brown raging torrent at some point this weekend,” said Doug Fraser, search manager of Chilliwack Search and Rescue. “The same goes for all of the creeks in the Fraser Valley.”
It only makes sense to stay safely back and away from creeks and rivers.
The Fraser River will also be affected but it won’t be as noticeable.
“Kids and pets need to be within reach at all times if walking along trails such as the Rotary Trail,” he noted. “A storm surging river or creek will carry a child or a pet downstream at an incredibly fast rate.”
The safety message from CSAR is aimed at everyone, but particularly people who are thinking about fishing this weekend.
“We have rescue calls every October or November for fishers who either become stranded due to rising water levels, or who are swept off their feet and carried downstream. Unfortunately, we also have calls every year for fishers who have drowned.”
Fishermen and other users should always wear a PFD.
“But I’d recommend not fishing at all when the river is flowing at storm surge levels,” said the SAR official.