Water ban linked to B.C. mine tailings spill partially lifted

The ban is rescinded for parts of the Quesnel River north of Quesnel Lake

LIKELY, B.C. – Health officials in B.C. have partially lifted a water ban that followed a spill from a mine tailings pond.

A tailings dam at the Mount Polley gold and copper mine, about 600 kilometres northeast of Vancouver, failed on Monday, releasing 10 million cubic metres of water and 4.5 million cubic metres of silt.

Dr. Trevor Corneil of Interior Health says the ban is rescinded for parts of the Quesnel River north of Quesnel Lake, including the small community of Likely.

In those areas, Corneil says people can drink and bathe in water as they normally would, although because of debris, officials are still recommending people not use the river for recreational use.

The water ban remains in place for Polley Lake, Hazeltine Creek, Cariboo Creek, Quesnel Lake and Quesnel River south of 6236 Cedar Creek Rd.

Corneil says people using well water still need to follow their usual precautions, such as measuring turbidity, to ensure their water is safe.




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