Extreme weather response beds open unofficially for tonight’s rainfall warning

Provincially funded program funds 20 one-night shelter spaces this November

Tonight's heavy rainfall forecast has prompted the opening of 20 emergency weather response beds for people sleeping outdoors.

Tonight's heavy rainfall forecast has prompted the opening of 20 emergency weather response beds for people sleeping outdoors.

There are 20 extreme weather response beds ready in Abbotsford and, unofficially, they’re opening for tonight’s rainstorm.

Program coordinator Nate McCready of the Salvation Army said though they aren’t officially using the provincially-funded extreme weather program tonight, they’ll open up the beds to anyone who needs them in light of the forecasted cold, driving rain and winds.

An Environment Canada rainfall warning is currently in effect for the Fraser Valley area, including Abbotsford, with the possibility of over 100 mm of rain tonight. Heavy rain is forecasted to continue tomorrow. Flooding and washouts are possible.

With a forecast below freezing for Sunday night, McCready expects to officially open BC Housing-funded beds very soon.

A province-wide program funded by BC Housing, Emergency Weather Response beds provide a one-night indoor shelter for people sleeping outdoors when the weather gets cold enough to endanger their safety.

There are 20 beds currently set aside at the Salvation Army’s Centre of Hope on Gladys Avenue for the month of November, and there will be 10 more beds available at Abbotsford Community Services come December.

After that, McCready is hoping the churches who usually participate in the program will offer beds in the new year. So far, he expects Sevenoaks Alliance and Abbotsford Pentecostal will likely open their doors.

The beds open when McCready issues an extreme weather alert, usually when temperatures dip below freezing, snow builds up, or there’s heavy cold rain. He consults with other front-line service providers to the homeless, like 5 and 2 Ministries and the Cyrus Centre, and together they make a judgement call about whether a bad weather pattern will endanger people’s health.

“[BC Housing] would rather we err on the side of caution,” McCready said.

Last winter, extreme weather response beds were also provided at Emmanuel Mennonite Church, Ross Road Community Church, and the Cyrus Centre.

This winter, the province is providing about $1.6 million in funding for the program B.C.-wide from November to March. About 1,200 temporary beds will be provided across the province.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nick Warmerdam and his dog Diesel are inviting locals to check out the Lakeland Farm U-pick Flower Farm this spring. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
VIDEO & SLIDESHOW: Abbotsford’s Lakeland Flowers opens for spring

Tulip farm attraction opened on April 14, open to the public daily seven days a week

A man holds a child while speaking with RCMP following an erratic driving incident on Highway 1 in Chilliwack on Friday, April 16, 2021. The child and a woman (but not this man) were in this Jeep Grand Cherokee which hit a barrier and a parked car on Highway 1 and continued driving. The vehicle finally exited the highway at Yale Road West and came to a stop. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Video captures woman driving erratically with child after hitting barrier, car on Hwy 1 in Chilliwack

Smoke seen coming from SUV as it continues to travel eastbound of shoulder of highway

Video image
UPDATE: Bridge traffic moving normally after high-velocity crash involving logging truck

Northbound crash occurred at approximately 2 p.m., involves 6 vehicles, north lanes shut down

An undated picture of the Hope Station House. (Photo/Save The Hope Station House)
Hope council must consider all options for Station House: B.C. Ombudsperson

Investigation ‘revealed flaws in District’s process,’ statement said

The West Coast Women’s Show is among numerous events held annually at Tradex in Abbotsford. (Abbotsford News file photo)
Show producers start petition against city’s call for Tradex proposals

Abbotsford site should remain as events facility, petition states

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
RCMP intercept vehicle fleeing with infant taken from Kamloops hospital

The baby was at the hospital receiving life-saving care

Premier John Horgan receives a dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the pharmacy in James Bay Thrifty’s Foods in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. Premier John Horgan gets AstraZeneca shot, encourages others

27% of residents in B.C. have now been vaccinated against COVID-19

Former Pitt Meadows city councillor David Murray was convicted of sex assault, and is now being sued by the victim. (files)
Former Pitt Meadows city councillor sued for sex assault

David Murray was convicted in 2017 of sexually assaulting a teen 25 years earlier

Vancouver Police Const. Deepak Sood is under review by the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. after making comments to a harm reduction advocate Sunday, April 11. (Screen grab)
VIDEO: Vancouver officer convicted of uttering threats under watchdog review again

Const. Deepak Sood was recorded Sunday saying ‘I’ll smack you’ and ‘go back to selling drugs’ to a harm reduction advocate

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate persists, 1,005 new cases Friday

Hospitalization up to 425, six more virus-related deaths

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Nautical Dog Cafe at Skaha marina is getting its patio ready in hopes Mother Nature will provide where provincial restrictions have taken away indoor dining. (Facebook)
‘A lot of instability’: B.C. restaurants in layoff limbo

As COVID-19 cases stay high, restaurants in British Columbia are closed to indoor dining

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Most Read