River Forecast Centre says snowpacks still high across B.C.

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VICTORIA, B.C. — Officials with the B.C. River Forecast Centre say that though the Peace Region is seeing lower than normal levels, snowpacks across the province – including those near Fort Nelson – are extremely high.

David Campbell with the River Forecast Centre said that on average, the provincial snowpack levels averaged 169 percent of normal on May 1st, an increase of around 30 percent since April 1st. The snowpack level is currently at 84 percent in the Peace River watershed, though the snowpack in the Liard watershed is 144 percent of normal.

Campbell said that much of the snow in the mid-elevation levels has been melting for the past 10 days, with the warm weather expected to increase melting at higher levels. He explained that the rain forecast to fall across much of the Southern Interior later this week luckily won’t be heading to the Peace Region, meaning the region won’t see as much potential flooding compared to areas in the Okanagan and the Cariboo.

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Campbell however did not rule out the potential for more intense runoff action in the Peace, saying that the flooding experienced in the South Peace two years ago largely occurred because of a combination of melting snowpacks and heavy rain. 

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