Rain warning continued

The worst of this week's rain should taper off today, with a drying trend over the weekend, before more rain hits the valley next week.

It rained this week—heavily—but there are ways of staying dry.

A rainfall warning was still in effect for the Central Okanagan late Wednesday, with the possibility of thunderstorms and hail, and showers tapering off today.

Meteorologist Doug Lundquist with Environment Canada’s mountain weather services office, says a low pressure system moved in Tuesday, carrying moisture from the Texas gulf area, and it was expected to drop a lot of rain in Alberta as well as in the South Central Interior of B.C.

Depending on where the centre of the storm is, the forecast was for 25 to 40 millimetres of rain here he said.

The wettest part of the system passed through this area Wednesday with more rain at higher elevations than in the valley bottom, he said.

And, the heaviest rains will hit the Similkameen, Nicola, South Thompson and in the Monashees east to the Kootenays, as well as in the foothills of the Rockies, said Lundquist.

By Friday, the system should be through and a Western ridge of drier weather is expected to go through over the weekend, he said.

Okanagan Lake is currently five centimetres below what’s called full pool, or the target level, and Des Anderson, section head for Public Safety and Protection, natural resource operations ministry, says they increased the discharge of water Tuesday afternoon from Okanagan Lake to make room for more inflow to the lake .

He says it will depend on the size of the event and how widespread the storm is, whether there’s any flooding as a result of it.

Melting snowpack is no longer a concern in the Okanagan, he said.

Central Okanagan emergency services coordinator Jason Brolund noted that June is normally a very wet month in the Okanagan.

He advised that people living near small to medium-sized streams be aware heavy rains could cause them to rise and anyone living near Okanagan Lake should also be prepared for rising water levels.

Last year, in late June, the lake’s level peaked at 15 cm above full pool, and Brolund is hopeful it won’t reach that level this year.

 

jsteeves@kelownacapnews.com

 

 

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