NEWS

Ice jam threatens bridge in Golden, B.C.

12/12/2013 09:57 EST | Updated 02/11/2014 05:59 EST
Residents in B.C.'s Kootenay region are watching the ice on two local rivers with a wary eye, after this week's cold snap caused ice jams to build up near the towns of Golden and Creston.

Jon Wilsgard, chief administrative officer for the town of Golden, said large chunks of ice, some the size of compact cars, broke away from a Rocky Mountain canyon above the town of Golden.

"The entire lower half of the Kicking Horse Canyon, of ice, came to rest in Golden," he said.

Golden's town council was concerned enough about the ice jam causing flowing and other damage to pay for a flyover survey this week.

As of Wednesday, the ice chunks were piling up perilously close to downtown, even scraping the bottom of the bridge over the Kicking Horse River.

"Our downtown is right next to the north side of the dike and Kicking Horse [River], so if in fact the ice rose and lifted for example the [Highway] 95 bridge off it's abutments, we would have a dissected community," Wilsgard said.  

The province thinks the town should be fine, but Wilsgard says there is more ice yet to come out of the canyon.

For now the town is watching the ice, taking measurements and hoping for the best.

A similar ice jam built up on the Goat River near Creston this week.

Google Map: Golden, B.C.

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