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Advisories

Community Information + Updates

November 29, 2021

UPDATE ON FLOODING AND ROAD SITUATIONS

For the most up-to-date information on the flood evacuation orders and road closures in Abbotsford, visit the City of Abbotsford webpage and follow them on Twitter. Abbotsford Police Department also provides ongoing updates on their Twitter account.

FRASER VALLEY FLOOD HELP

For a comprehensive spreadsheet of resources to assist flood victims & provide information to volunteers who want to help out, check out the Facebook page for Fraser Valley Flood Help. You can see an updated shared google doc with activities here.

ACCESS TO ABBOTSFORD

Access to and through Abbotsford has improved with the reopening of Highway 1 between Abbotsford and Chilliwack. While the highway is open to general travel, government officials are asking to only drive through this area if necessary and to expect slow traffic with reduced speed limits. Commercial vehicles over 63500kg are prohibited.

Access to Abbotsford from Mission is available along the Mission bridge and Highway 11, however, there are detours along Highway 11 due to road repairs.

Access to Abbotsford from the USA is not available via the Huntingdon/Sumas Border. However, access is available from the Lynden/Aldergrove border then along 16th Ave or Fraser Highway.

For the latest information on roads and highways in the region, check out Drive BC on your mobile device.

Transit update – with the reopening of Highway 1, BC Transit will be resuming operation of the entire route 66 Fraser Valley Express between Chilliwack and Langley, effective immediately.

Most Abbotsford Businesses Open

Abbotsford is the largest city in BC by area. The Sumas Prairie area of Abbotsford, the area that has been most impacted by flooding and is still under evacuation alerts and orders, is home to many farms and residents. However, this area is only approximately 25% of Abbotsford. This means approximately 75% of Abbotsford remains unaffected by flooding and has been operating under normal conditions since the middle of last week. This includes restaurants, retail shops, hotels, gas stations, cafes, breweries etc. If you are unsure about what businesses or areas of Abbotsford may be open and accessible, please call our visitor services number at 604-859-1721.

HOW TO SUPPORT EMERGENCY RESPONSE EFFORTS

The most frequently asked question the past couple of days has been “How can we help?” and we completely understand! Our community is incredibly giving and we want to help share a few ways you can show your support in the emergency response efforts.

For the most part, people have been directed to the City of Abbotsford’s main emergency response number 604-864-5688 as they are in charge of the emergency response efforts.

With attention turning more towards recovery and the anticipated needs in the coming weeks of those who have been impacted, there are several fundraisers and organizations with programs to assist those in need*:

Archway Community Services Food Bank

In addition to providing essential food services to the community each month, they are also supporting roughly 50 Spanish-speaking foreign workers displaced from the Farms during this local emergency. Their page has a secure form to donate directly as well as a list of the most needed food items. Please note no donations of clothing or supplies are needed at these locations.

Salvation Army Abbotsford

They have launched an emergency response effort to help victims of the floods with food, hydration, shelter, clothing, and blankets to first responders, evacuees, and flood victims around the clock at Tradex. They have created an Emergency Flood Relief Appeal, to make a safe and secure donation go to their website or call 1-800-Sal-Army.

Abbotsford Disaster Relief Fund

Abbotsford Community Foundation, Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, and the University of Fraser Valley have jointly established this fund which will support front-line agencies providing essential services to affected families and businesses. Please visit their website for more info or to donate.

Support Migrant Farmworkers Displaced by BC Floods

This organization distributes supplies and pre-paid cards to hundreds of migrant workers impacted by BC flooding. With some workers in shelters, others evacuated to safer arms, and some unable to leave where they are – all funds raised go directly to their support. You can donate weekly, monthly or yearly amounts through their website.

Khalsa Aid Canada

This international organization has been busy throughout Abbotsford and the region with providing Emergency food and water supplies since the flood event happened. They run on the Sikh principle of “Recognize the whole human race as one”. Donations can be made by e-transfer to office.canada@khalsaaid.org

Canadian Red Cross British Columbia Floods & Extreme Weather Appeal

One-time or monthly contributions can be made to help people in and around the affected areas. Their goal is to help as quickly as possible and provide humanitarian assistance for new needs as they arise. Money raised will enable them to carry out relief, recovery and risk reduction activities beyond the region at individual and community levels.

BC SPCA 

They are responding to pet guardians impacted by BC Flooding who were evacuated due to flooding in Abbotsford with pet food, crates, leashes, harnesses and other urgent supplies at the ESS reception set up at Tradex. The table is available for anyone affected to simply come to pick up what you need. If you are in need of emergency boarding or animal assistance please call BC SPCA call center (9-6pm) 1-855-622-7722, after hours ESS 1-800-585-9559.

Disaster Aid Canada

This registered Charity is in communication with Rotary and support contacts in affected areas of disasters. With their first-hand knowledge they are able to gather funds to provide disaster relief kits to people displaced by disasters. You can donate through their website to help BC residents affected by BC flooding.

BC Agriculture Council Fundrasier

Direct support to BC Farmers affected by severe weather events, they focus on relief efforts and support to families and livestock affected by BC Flooding. You can donate through their website or e-transfer – donation@bcac.ca.

For those wishing to donate funds or supplies to evacuees, contact donations@gov.bc.ca

*This is not meant to be an exhaustive list. We will add to and update as we learn about other efforts and services. Please let us know if you are aware of any further community support programs.

A number of private organizations have chosen to accept donations but as of November 18th, 2021, the Flood Evacuation Reception Centre at Tradex is not currently accepting any donations. When a central donation reception centre becomes available, we will update this page.

ABBOTSFORD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Abbotsford International Airport remains open and unaffected by the recent flooding in Sumas Prairie. Located in West Abbotsford, over 10 km away from Sumas Prairie, the airport continues to service arriving and departing passengers from across Canada. There are no issues with accessing the airport from Metro Vancouver and from most parts of Abbotsford. Be advised that that YXX can not be accessed from people in the eastern part of Abbotsford or from Chilliwack or Hope due to the ongoing highway closure.

Swoop has added new flights between Abbotsford (YXX) and Kelowna (YLW) for travelers in immediate need of transportation or those traveling to assist in the recovery efforts and emergency response. You can see the full announcement here.

Current COVID-19 Travel Guidelines are still in effect.

Click here for the most up-to-date airport information.

Visitor Services Re-established To Assist YXX Passengers

With the uncertainty created by floods, regional road closures, and the recent announcement from Swoop about the Kelowna/Abbotsford sky bridge, we are re-establishing visitor services at YXX effective immediately through to Christmas. Please reach out to us at (604) 859-1721 with any questions you have about access to and from the airport and the city in general. You can also ask questions through the homepage on our website.

ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS IN THE REGION

While there was an increased demand for hotel rooms in Abbotsford the past few days due to flooding or highway closures, things seem to be settling down a bit with more rooms becoming available. For a list of accommodation options, check out our listings page here.

Please Note – The Clarion Hotel will be closed for a couple of weeks for repairs. If you are having a tough time finding a room, the best options to look for availability are in Surrey, Langley, or Mission given Highway 1 to the east remains closed. You can find links to accommodation pages below.

Discover Surrey
Tourism Langley
Tourism Mission

GOVERNMENT Advisories

Vessel Traffic Prohibited

Effective immediately, non-essential vessel traffic is prohibited in flooded areas to keep boaters safe and areas clear for emergency response. Exceptions will be allowed for emergency crews and access to personal property. In Abbotsford, the following two areas have been highlighted by Transport Canada:

  • Sumas River and the waters over the floodplains on the Sumas Prairies, between McCallum Road, the U.S. border, and Vedder River
  • Fraser River and its tributaries, including the waters over the neighbouring floodplains, from the town of Yale to the city of Mission
Drones

Transport Canada has extended the NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) restricting all aircraft, including drones, from flying lower than 1000ft between Abbotsford Airport and Chilliwack Airport until midnight Pacific time on November 24.

APD is stressing to the public again that drones are not allowed in the Sumas Prairie area. Air traffic is in the area to continually conduct aerial assessments and to assist the farmers. Drones impact aircraft from performing their duties and put them at significant risk.

Do Not Use Water Advisory (Flush Only) issued for Sumas Prairie.

The City of Abbotsford has issued a Do Not Use Water (Flush Only) Advisory.

This Advisory replaces the previous BOIL WATER ADVISORY issued on November 18. It is being put in place due to continued uncontrollable watermain breaches that could allow surface water to enter the drinking water system. Until such time that breaches are contained and water quality is verified through testing, this Advisory will remain active and is expected to be in place for several days.

No other areas of the Abbotsford water system are affected by this event and the water remains safe to drink.

We will be updating this page regularly as the updates come in. While Tourism Abbotsford hopes to compile helpful resources, please know that the information being shared is cited from their original sources. This page should not be considered the main source of information regarding the current emergency response efforts in Abbotsford.