Students assist with sandbagging

Students assist with sandbagging

Water level in Okanagan Lake is now at 343.19 metres

As the water level continued to rise, students from Summerland Secondary School assisted with sandbagging at a property on Lakeshore Drive.

The Grade 12 students arrived at the property Thursday at 11:30 a.m. and remained until 7 p.m.

They returned on Friday, this time with a truck and trailer, to bring sandbags to the home.

Sandy Mikkelsen, who lives at the home, said the home has been affected by the rising water. Two sump pumps have been set up to drain water from the crawl space.

“We’re trying to do everything we can to save the property, because it’s been in the family since 1933,” she said.

With help from the students, a sandbag wall has now been erected around the property.

Close to a dozen students participated.

“They work independently. They’re polite. They’re very respectful,” Mikkelsen said.

Throughout the community residents at lakefront properties and volunteers have been working to erect sandbag dikes as the water level in Okanagan Lake continues to rise.

According to information from the municipality of Summerland, the lake level is now at 343.19 metres as of 11:30 a.m. on Friday.

The projection, from the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, is for a peak level of 343.25 metres.

The high water level has caused flooding to lakefront properties and a beaches and parks along the water.

Sandbags are available at the Summerland Arena this weekend and may be picked up as needed.

Residents pumping water from their homes are asked to pump it directly into Okanagan Lake, not into the municipality’s sewer system.

Because of the excess water flowing through the sewer treatment plant, there is a risk that the system’s capacity will be reached.

Municipal crews are also monitoring underground electrical junction boxes.

At present, power has been disconnected at 14 properties because of the danger from underground vaults and submerged connections.