Reservoir Cleaning and Dam Inspection for the District of Port Edward
August 2, 2016
Reservoir Maintenance in Remote Village of Kitkatla
August 30, 2018
During the summer of 2018, when the Gitxaala Nation called to have their water reservoir intake repaired, we jumped at the opportunity to visit their village of Kitkatla. Accessible only by float plane or boat, the community is located approximately 45 km S.W. of Prince Rupert, British Columbia, on the north side of Dolphin Island.
The boat ride was through one of the most naturally beautiful passages in the province, taking us by many small islands and inlets that are home to a wide range of marine resources, which have a long history of use by First Nations people.
Upon arrival, we were directed to the reservoir behind the community, which was formed from a natural lake. Access to the reservoir was no easy feat because we had to make repeated trips, while packing our heavy gear.
The Public Works staff informed us that the intake pipe, which was normally suspended near the surface, had fallen to the bottom of the lake and was getting clogged with sediments. With no visibility and safety the number one priority, our divers navigated blindly through a matrix of ropes and chains to locate the intake pipe deep in the mud and raise it to a surface float.
It was a tricky and complex situation that required a lot of patience and skill. We secured the intake pipe and left the rest to the Kitkatla’s Public Works to complete the repairs.