Evacuees Await Word On If They Can Return to Their Homes
Photograph by Mike Patterson
The Cowichan Valley Regional District has been forced to declare a local emergency due to flooding.
The flooding caused the evacuation of homes in Crofton, closed the highway between Duncan and Chemainus and flooded many local roads in the Cowichan Valley.
Highway One reopened, but many other roads remain flooded.
Late Friday night and into early Saturday morning, firefighters went door to door in a Crofton neighbourhood to rescue people as water surrounded their homes.
A BC Transit bus transported the evacuees to the Cowichan Community Centre, which was opened as a shelter to about 28 residents of North Cowichan and the Halalt First Nation.
One of those evacuated says firefighters knocked on her door about 2:30 am and told them to leave immediately. Jolene says the fire crews had brought a boat right up to the deck of their home and when she offered to drive herself and her partner away, she was informed the family vehicle was nearly submerged by the floodwater. She says they had no time to gather personal belongings and scooped up their two pets and got into the boat.
Jolene and other evacuees are now trying to sort out what to do about temporary housing and come to grips with the fact that they may have lost everything in the flood.