Flood watch costs city $350K
Although the Fraser River did not spill its banks in New Westminster in 2012, mitigating the possibility cost the city about $350,000 according to a report being presented to council on Monday.
The threat of a possible flood materialized this past spring when the river's watershed experienced greater than average snowfall during the winter, followed by lots of rain in the spring.
The Fraser peaked at 6.83 metres at the Mission gauge on June 22, a higher level than those of previous flood threats inn 2007 (5.94) and 2009 (6.21).
With the warnings, New Westminster either installed temporary dykes or had sandbags on standby along the Quay waterfront, the Braid industrial area and a few localized areas in Queensborough.
In 2012, the city increased its sandbag inventory to 45,000 while also using up to 80 per cent of the concrete blocks from 2007.
This year's program also included incorporating water-filled tube dams that could be installed quickly if the river rose too high.
"These dams cost less than filled sandbags for an equivalent level of protection and have additional advantages due to their re-usable nature and faster field deployment time," said the engineering department report.
Most of the $350,000, which include taking the temporary measures down, went toward buying the sandbags, dams, labour and equipment.