NOTICE TO SECWEPEMC COMMUNITY FISHERS
STOP FISHING IMMEDIATELY
August 7, 2014
RE: MOUNT POLLEY MINE TAILINGS POND BREACH
On August 4th the tailings pond dam at the Mount Polley Mine site breached and released contaminated waste water and sediment into Polley Lake. Hazeltine Creek flows out of Polley Lake and the flow of contaminated materials continued into Quesnel Lake. The Quesnel River flows out of Quesnel Lake for approximately 100 km into the Fraser River at Quesnel.
SFC is monitoring this mining disaster closely. The potential impacts on fish health are obvious and serious, but have yet to be fully determined. There are reports already of salmon being caught near Lytton in the Fraser River with their skins peeling off.
We all urgently need reliable information about the toxicity of the materials and the scope of the pollution. Water quality testing is currently being done by the Ministry of the Environment and we are awaiting results today. As we receive updated information, SFC will forward it to community fisheries managers and catch surveyors.
At this time there is reason to believe that fishing will be affected in the Thompson River. SFC is advising Secwepemc community fishers to EXERCISE CAUTION AND STOP FISHING UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.
For further information:
BC Provincial Government Newsroom http://www.newsroom.gov.bc.ca/2014/08/mt-polley-mine-incident.html