Flood Warnings and Advisories

Flood Watch –Vancouver Island (West & South)

ISSUED: 11:15 PM January 31, 2020

The River Forecast Centre is issuing a Flood Watch for:

  • Western Vancouver Island
  • Southern Vancouver Island

The River Forecast Centre is issuing a High Streamflow Advisory for:

  • Eastern Vancouver Island

    An atmospheric river is causing heavy precipitation for Vancouver Island. The weather station at Effingham has recorded nearly 300mm of rain on Friday, following the 50mm of rain that fell on Thursday.

    Rivers in Western Vancouver Island and Southern Vancouver Island have risen dramatically Friday evening. These include:

    • Tofino Creek near the Mouth (08HB006) peaked above a 10-year flow at 300 m3/s at 9pm.
    • Sarita River near Bamfield (08HB014) is currently above a 2-year flow and still rising.
    • San Juan River near Port Renfrew(08HA010) is currently above a 5-yr flow and still rising.
    • Renfrew Creek near Port Renfrew (08HA069) peaked above a 20 year flow at 122 m3/s at 5pm.
    • Koksilah River at Cowichan Station (08HA003) is currently near a 2-year flow and still rising.
    • Cowichan River near Duncan (08HA011) is currently near a 5-year flow and still rising.
    • Chemainus River near Westholme (08HA001) is currently above a 5-year flow and still rising.

    Additionally, Eastern Vancouver Island has been added to the High Streamflow Advisory. Most notably the English River near Parksville is currently rising quickly and nearing a 2-year flow.

    Rivers are expected to peak early Saturday morning as the rainfall ends.

    The public is advised to stay clear of the fast-flowing rivers and potentially unstable riverbanks during the high-river-level period.

    The River Forecast Centre will continue to monitor and provide updates as conditions warrant.

    Contact for Media Relations, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development:
    Tel: 250 356-7506

    Levels of Warnings/Advisories:

    1. High Streamflow Advisory: River levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but that no major flooding is expected. Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible. This is the lowest level.
    2. Flood Watch: River levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bankfull. Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur. This is the intermediate level.
    3. Flood Warning: River levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to the rivers affected will result. This is the highest level.


    1. Home of River Forecast Centre
    2. Current Streamflow Conditions and Flood Forecast Modeling
    3. Map of Current Streamflow Return Periods for All WSC Stations
    4. CLEVER Model 10-day Forecasts of Discharges and Return Periods
    5. COFFEE Model 5-day Forecasts of Discharges and Return Periods
    6. Back to page of Flood Warnings and Advisories