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B.C. storm: More evacuations ordered due to flooding, landslide risks

Vancouver -

The latest storm to reach southwestern B.C. has prompted a string of new evacuation orders, while some Abbotsford residents have been allowed to return home for the first time in days.

On Wednesday evening, the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District placed eight homes near Pemberton on evacuation order and dozens more on evacuation alert due to an increased risk of landslides in Electoral Area "C."

Most of the properties are located along Reid Road, part of which has been washed out by the recent rainfall, according to the district.

Another evacuation order has been issued along Chilliwack Lake Road, to the northeast of Cultus Lake in Electoral Area "E." Officials said high flows and bank erosion in the Chilliwack River has posed an "immediate danger to life and property."

Farther east, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen ordered 10 rural properties outside Princeton to be evacuated over fresh flooding along the Similkameen River.

Mudslides and overland flooding have also prompted a number of road closures in Mission, and forced TransLink to shut down West Coast Express service.

Initially, the transit agency said trains would be unable to continue past Port Haney, but it later said West Coast Express Trains 4 and 5 had been cancelled. For passengers on Train 3, there is a bus bridge from Port Coquitlam to Mission, TransLink said.

"We thank our passengers for their patience and regret this inconvenience," the agency said in a statement.

In an email to CTV News, CP Rail confirmed that mud was observed on the West Coast Express track west of Port Haney Station. There were no injuries and no trains were involved in the slide, according to CP.

Meanwhile, improving conditions have allowed Abbotsford to downgrade an evacuation order for some properties in the city's Huntingdon Village area to an evacuation alert.

People living in an area bordered by 2nd Avenue on the north, Sumas Way on the west, the U.S. border on the south and 2nd Avenue to Southern Rail on the east have been allowed to return home.

"Please be aware that you may be evacuated again if the situation escalates," warns a message on the Abbotsford website.

The latest evacuation orders and alerts can be found on the Emergency Info B.C. website.  

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