Freshet Flooding

During the spring, runoff from melting snow may raise water levels in streams and lakes. This natural function of the overall ecosystem does not necessarily result in flooding every year. However, when it does flood the impact of water on land, buildings and roadways can be destructive. Flood protection for homes and private property is an owner’s responsibility. This responsibility includes having the necessary equipment ready to protect their homes and sandbagging if necessary. 

Before flooding, residents can take steps to reduce potential of flooding including clearing snow and pooling water away from foundations and making sure soil, walkways and patios slope away from the home.

In freshet season, the City of Vernon actively monitors flooding indicators and when potential for flooding is elevated, works with Emergency Management BC to provide sand and sandbags for residents to access.


To learn more about preparing for flooding visit the following sites:

Homeowners may be able to moderate their flood risk by purchasing insurance. Contact local insurance representatives or brokers to determine eligibility for overland flood insurance.

Flooding Terminology

Freshet refers to the movement of water associated with the thawing of ice and snow each spring.

Flood Warning

Flood Warning: River levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers will result.

Flood Watch

Flood Watch: River levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bankfull. Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur.

High Streamflow Advisory

High Streamflow Advisory: River levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but no major flooding is expected. Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible.

Left or Right Bank

The side of a stream is normally described as left or right bank. This is determined from the view point of looking in the direction of the stream flow.