Premier John Horgan has declared a state of emergency for BC.
He said federal support is also coming to the province, and the military will be deployed to help with food supplies, clean water, and shelter.
“Provincial, federal and local governments are working with emergency personnel to make sure people and communities get the help they need as they work through yet another natural disaster. This provincial declaration of emergency will ensure the transport of goods, and essential and emergency services,” said Horgan.
The state of emergency is initially in effect for 14 days and may be extended or rescinded as necessary. The state of emergency applies to the whole province and ensures federal, provincial, and local resources can be delivered in a coordinated response to protect the public, which remains the provincial government’s top priority.
There are approximately 17,775 people evacuated due to impacts from the flooding, with 5,918 properties on Evacuation Order, and 3,632 properties on Evacuation Alert.
Minister of Public Safety Mike Farnworth said steps were taken not to induce panic in communities, and experts are consulted with to make sure notifications are sent out appropriately.
“They (experts) determined that no, this is not the appropriate point to use this, that what they were doing is going door to door, that was the most effective way. That’s how these decisions need to be made, by the experts on the ground, not by experts on Twitter.”
Farnworth also added that supplies were still getting to Prince George just fine.
“Just to remind people, because we’ve heard in cases in Northern BC. The routes from Edmonton to Prince George, to Prince Rupert are wide open, and the trucks will be going back and forth, and there will be plenty of supply.”
Both Horgan and Farnworth took aim at hoarders, saying that it is not needed, and steps will be taken if it continues.
“With respect to the hoarding again, I’m saying, people, do the right thing. Listen to what your mom told you when you were little: do unto others as you would have done unto you. Respect the fact that you do not need 48 eggs, a dozen will do,” said Horgan.
“That is one of the areas under the state of emergency where emergency could be used for example in terms of dealing with not just hoarding but gouging,” said Farnworth.