Flood Preparedness

Floods are common in B.C. and can happen at any time of year. The most severe floods usually occur in spring or during fall and winter. This seasonal flooding is usually caused by heavy rain and melting snow. They can also be caused by storm surges, ice jams or damage to structures like dikes or dams.

What to do Before a Flood

  • Know if you live in an area at risk of flooding.
  • Make an emergency plan for your household and practice it.
  • Prepare emergency kits with enough food at water for each family member for at least three days (72 hours).
  • Have a grab-and-go bag ready in case you need to leave your home quickly.
  • If flooding is likely in your area, watch official City of Chilliwack webpages and social media, and listen to local media.
  • Consider arrangements for pets and livestock.
  • More information: BC Flood Preparedness Guide

What to do During a Flood

If your property is threatened by rising waters:

  • If you have time, bring in outdoor furniture.
  • Move valuable, essential items and any hazardous materials (e.g. cleaners or pesticides) to an upper floor or away from the area.
  • Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves and unplug electrical items.
  • Park vehicles away from streams and waterways.
  • Do not walk or drive through flood waters.
  • Raise electrical appliances.
  • Prepare for the possibility of evacuation.
  • More information on utilities and flooding:

If you must evacuate:

  • Always follow the instructions of local emergency officials.
  • Ensure each family member has waterproof clothing and footwear.
  • Lock all doors and windows and double check to ensure gas, electricity and water are all shut off.
  • Turn off your gas at the main shut-off valve. Don’t turn it back on yourself. For information on how to turn off your gas meter visit FortisBC.
  • Take extra care while driving – familiar roads may look dramatically different when flooded. Do not drive into flooded areas. Check the road conditions before you leave.
  • Do not walk through moving water. Less than 15 centimetres of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, go where the water is not moving and watch for tripping hazards.
  • Register at the reception centre. Reception centre information will be posted on the official City of Chilliwack website.
  • Keep disaster response routes clear.

What to do After a Flood

  • Listen for news reports to learn whether the water supply is safe to drink. Watch for boil water advisories.
  • Avoid floodwater – it may be contaminated or electrically charged from downed power lines.
  • Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.
  • Mud left from floodwater can contain sewage and chemicals. HealthLinkBC has information about how to clean up after a flood.
  • Do not turn on electrical switches or wet electrical equipment unless verified by an electrician.
  • Avoid health hazards and throw out food and medicine that may have been contaminated by flood waters or being left in an unplugged fridge.
  • Contact your insurance and utility companies.

Flood Resources

Flood Recovery

Health and Drinking Water

Utilities and Appliances

More information