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Environment Canada warns of heavy rain for Vancouver Island, Lower Mainland

50 to 70 millimetres expected throughout Monday
A vehicles navigates through pooled water on the corner of Yates Street at Cook Street in November 2021. Heavy rains are again expected in Greater Victoria Feb. 28. (Don Denton/Black Press)

Residents in Greater Victoria, east and west Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland can expect a wet start to the week, according to Environment Canada.

The weather agency is forecasting 50 to 70 millimetres of rain throughout the day Monday, except between Sooke and Port Renfrew where up to 100 millimetres is forecast. It’s warning commuters that heavy downpours can cause flash floods and water pooling on roads.

“Localized flooding in low-lying areas is possible. Watch for possible washouts near rivers, creeks and culverts,” Environment Canada says.

The weather is expected is ease by Monday evening.

Weather warnings and special weather statements covered much of southern British Columbia on Monday as Environment Canada warned of torrential rain at lower elevations and heavy snow on inland mountain passes.

The warning includes a threat of localized flooding and washouts, although the River Forecast Centre said models showed the heaviest rain would fall south of the border in Washington state.

High streamflow advisories were issued for much of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley and the centre warned U.S. officials were indicating significant flooding was likely on the American side of the Nooksack River, the same waterway linked to severe floods around Abbotsford in November.

The River Forecast Centre says its U.S. counterpart expected rivers to peak Tuesday and did not expect levels to reach heights that could flow into Canada and overwhelm the Sumas River drainage.

The storm was also expected to dump up to 50 centimetres of snow on the Kootenay Pass while the weather office said that could change to rain at lower elevations of highways, including the Coquihalla between Hope and Merritt.

“Consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve,” Environment Canada said about travel along sections of Highway 3 in southeastern B.C.

— with a file from Canadian Press

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