All of Hay River and K’atlodeeche First Nation were ordered to evacuate late Wednesday night as exceptionally high water and ice overflowed onto both the town and reserve sides of the river.
“Please be advised due to a flood threat an Evacuation Order has been issued for All of Hay River,” the town stated at 11:45 p.m.
“Residents should head to higher ground or the Community Centre. Residents can also travel by road to Enterprise and await there for more instruction.”
Chief April Martel of KFN stated in a post after midnight that community members to leave for Enterprise “immediately.”
On the Town side, video footage shot by Darlene Lamb showed flood waters inundating Riverview Cineplex at the B & R Rowe Centre and Whispering Willows area along the Capital Drive around the Aurora College, Hay River Community Learning Centre and up Lepine Drive.
“River is flooding,” Jane Groenewegen posted to her Facebook page. “Everyone needs to get out of buildings downtown now.”
Coun. Linda Duford posted a video from her Purple Pick Studio and broke into tears.
“Riverview is flooding, and 553 is flooding and there are emergency vehicles all over the place,” she said.
“I’m safe now and my nephew came and rescued me. I just want to ask people to stay off the roads right now.
“Downtown sewers have backed up and you can’t get through. There is about two feet of water.
“Emergency vehicles are having troubles getting through. Unless you are being evacuated or you’re helping out please stay off the roads and stay safe.”
On the reserve side, Martel showed footage on the reserve road where flood waters were quickly surrounding the arbour and encroaching across the roadway and into the municipal yard.
“The trees are breaking over here,” she said exasperated and commenting on extensive damages. “Look how fast the water is flowing.”
This story will be updated….