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Flood risk downgraded on some B.C. rivers, but Kelowna residents still watchful

FILE PHOTO: Derek Palmer with the BC Wildfire Service helps prepare sandbags at one of the many Emergency Sandbagging Stations around Kelowna B.C., on May 12, 2017. A flood watch is in effect for the South Thompson and Shuswap rivers in B.C.’s southern Interior, but the River Forecast Centre has downgraded the risk on the North Thompson River and on the Thompson River through Kamloops.

Jeff Bassett/THE CANADIAN PRESS

A flood watch is in effect for the South Thompson and Shuswap rivers in B.C.'s southern Interior, but the River Forecast Centre has downgraded the risk on the North Thompson River and on the Thompson River through Kamloops.

However, the centre says high streamflow advisories remain up for the North Thompson and Thompson rivers and for the Slocan River in southeastern British Columbia.

The centre says all advisories have been ended for the Kettle River in the Similkameen, the West and East Kootenay, Columbia region and for Mission Creek, through downtown Kelowna.

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But the Central Okanagan Regional District warns fluctuations in water levels in the area don't mean the flooding event has peaked.

The district says Mission Creek is flowing quickly but rain expected Thursday could continue through the weekend, increasing the flows once again.

The regional district also advises that the unprecedented flood levels of Okanagan Lake have pushed the underground water table to the surface, possibly flooding basements and crawl spaces or washing over low-lying roads that don't immediately border the lake.

It advises residents to prepare for flooding that could reach 343.5 metres, half a metre above historic flood levels of 1948.

The district had another 250,000 sandbags delivered to area depots on Tuesday as Kelowna-area homeowners are reminded not to relax until after water levels are forecast to peak later this month.

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