Category Archives: News

Smoke Haze Due To Controlled Burn

Last night (May 8) it was a cloud on the western horizon – today it’s a smelly haze hanging over the town.
What’s Burning?
It is an “Ecosystem restoration burn planned for Gibbs Creek” according to the BC Wildfire Service.

According to the site page:
The key goals of this burn include:

  • rejuvenating the shrub, herb and grass layer, which will enhance habitat for mule deer, white-tailed deer and elk;
  • improving overall biodiversity in the area and promoting more climate-resilient tree stands; and
  • reducing accumulations of dead and combustible material, which will decrease the risk of future catastrophic wildfires in the area.

We can all hope that it goes well and the smoke quickly dissipates.

Meanwhile it’s a reminder that fire season is coming. The time to check your readiness is Now before it’s too late to be effective. Check those fire extinguishers to see if they still have a charge. Clean up any dry debris that could become kindling. Give some thought to exactly what you will take if you have to leave in a hurry because you won’t be clear about it in the moment.

Follow the latest wildfire news:
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Think about using the RDKB’s new Voyent Alert App to get the most up-to-date notifications on your phone or mobile device. We learned more about this during Preparedness Week.

Preparedness Week 2019

Preparedness Week saw things happening in Grand Forks from April 11 to 13th

Beginning on April 11 with a presentation on Your Finances After The Flood from Grand Forks Credit Union and Community Futures hosted by Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy at Selkirk College.

On April 12 and 13th 2 blocks of Market Ave. in Grand Forks were closed to traffic so a number of demonstrations and information booths could be set up for preparedness week

One of the things they wanted to point out to people was how to properly do sand bagging. Flooding in your home or store is bad enough but imagine the frustration after a lot of hard work placing sandbags only to have that water infiltrate past them. There are ways to make that less likely to happen and make the barriers better. Paul Edmonds from Red Dragon Consulting takes us through it.

Remember what it was like trying to stay abreast of the changing threats over the last few years? Do you listen to the radio? Which website has the most up-to-date information? Are there public postings for those who aren’t on the web? Where? How do you know?
Well the Regional District has take a step forward in keeping you informed about threats as they happen. They’ve brought out an App (Voyent Alert) for phones and tablets that will get Push notifications about threats as they unfold. Push means you don’t have to make the App visit the website – it gets a notification all by itself. So if there’s a wildfire coming to where you are right now. or a flood, the App will let you know. It runs on both Apple’s iOS or Google’s Android systems.
Listen to RDKB’s Interim Emergency Program Manager Mark Stephens explain more.

What if you’ve gone out into the wilderness hiking, biking, snowmobiling, or hunting and something happens and you need help. What are you going to do?
Did you bring a GPS? Good – You know where you are.
But how do you get that information to Help?
Do you have a Satellite phone? No? How about a Two-Way radio? One that works in the mountains . . .
Or as you lie there with your broken leg / burst appendix / cuts and scrapes will you be wondering how long your body will be there before its found?
It doesn’t have to be that way or have that bad an outlook if you have an In-Reach device . . . with one of those rescuers can know exactly where you are and you can let them know what is wrong so they bring the right supplies to help you. Listen to Scott Lamont from Grand Forks Search and Rescue explain.

Politicians from various levels of government (not the feds) were present. Local city councillors were serving up pancake breakfast with the Elks on Saturday. Other were there to talk about what has happened, is happening and will take place in the future. Mayor Taylor, RDKB Chair Roly Russell and Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness Jennifer Rice spoke.

Last Greyhound To Anywhere Has Left

For 85 years people without transportation in local communities in this part of the country have been connected by Greyhound. But that has come to an end . . . Greyhound will no longer service rural western Canada.

Back in 1929, when this all began, not that many people had their own car or truck – and as often as not a trip out of town wasn’t looked upon as the same easy choice it is today. Roads back then made for a much more exciting, and lengthy, trip. Where you see paved highways today imagine dirt and gravel tracks. That bridge over the Paulson on the way to Castlegar or Trail didn’t exist. The bypass which heads down into the valley and back up again was the route they took. Unless they went over the Santa Rosa. So that quick back and forth to Trail of today would be a two day trip.

Vehicles were more cantankerous, more dangerous, less dependable and far less comfortable than they are now.

Crank by hand to start – try not to break your wrist or arm with the backfires. If you’ve never seen this done watch the video below.

Either primitive or no shocks to absorb the jolts and deaden the springs bouncing you around on the bumpy roads. Narrow tires prone to getting stuck in the mud.

Imagine this – No insulation or heaters to keep out the cold in winter. People resorted to bringing hot coals in boxes and hot water bottles. Large coats and thick blankets for those long drives.

No in-window heaters to clear off the condensation so you could see. One or two speed wipers that were prone to snow and ice build-up. No BCAA to help you out if something went wrong. No cell phones to call for help with.

Now with all that against you it’s easy to see how people would opt for letting someone else take care of the problems while they road along as passengers. Hence the popularity of public transport by Bus.

But times changed. Technology improved. Investments were made in road infrastructure.

Personal vehicles got better and more people could afford them. The roads improved and eventually the routes all got paved. Overnight round trips became same day ones.

All that meant the ridership numbers for Greyhound fell. Over time they eventually dropped so low that eventually the company decided that it had to give up serving these routes.

Which brings us to Today. Greyhound no longer travels Highway 3 in rural BC. No longer stops here in Grand Forks.

That does not mean we will be without public transport though. New replacements have already popped up.

This was spotted locally the other day and shared to a local Facebook group. The website for Silver City Stagelines is Global News has a piece on them with an interview with the owner.

You will notice the pick-up / drop-off location is now the Canco station (formerly the Shell) at Boundary and Central. In the past year it has moved from the original bus depot location across from the baseball stadium, to the PetroCan station to the Canco station. Hopefully it will remain there for a while.


Aug 22 Flood Recovery Update

On August 22 there was another Boundary Flood Recovery Update meeting at GFSS in Grand Forks.

The audience grew to over 110 people. The number seated on stage had shrunk to 4  (previous meetings had as many as 8).

The organization this time was a timeline review of June and July followed by about 20 submitted questions and then the questioning was opened up to the floor.

You can watch and listen below

Part 1 – Timelines – June and July

Part 2 – Submitted Questions

Part 3 – Questions from the Floor