North Thompson River water use can resume, says ministry

Residents drawing their water from the North Thompson River north of Vavenby can resume regular use of their private water systems.

Interior Health lifted its water advisory on Thursday for the area after water sampling issued by the Ministry of Environment showed the risk of contamination from a semi-truck that spilled diesel fuel into the river is low.

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The advisory, which covered an area about 11 kilometres north of Avola, down to the confluence of the North Thompson and Clearwater Rivers, was put in place Jan. 5 after the truck crashed near the the river off Highway 5 on Jan. 5, spilling the diesel from a punctured fuel tank.

“If users notice any changes in the water, such as a fuel odour or an oil-sheen in the water, they are advised to stop using the water and have their water tested,” stated an IH press release.

The Vavenby community water system was not impacted due to its distance away from the crash, nor was the Avola Improvement District, which draws its water from Avola Creek. Users of that water system, however, remains on a pre-existing boil water advisory.

The Jan. 5 accident was the second spill in the river in a week.

The first took place Dec. 30, leading to a do not use advisory for the Vavenby Community Water System, and involved a semi-truck hauling meat left the crashing into the river about 10 km south of Avola. It’s fuel tanks ruptured and spilled an estimated 400 litres of diesel into the water.

© Kamloops This Week


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