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British Columbians worried about more extreme weather, but many admit to being unprepared

If you had to leave, would you be ready?

Floods and forest fires force B.C. Interior residents to leave their homes at a moment's notice every year.

If you had to leave, would you be ready?

According to a BCAA survey, 85 per cent of British Columbians are worried about a repeat of last year’s extreme weather events, but 43 per cent admit that they haven’t done anything to prepare for potential flooding, atmospheric rivers, wildfires, or extreme heat.

“Although our survey indicates that 57 per cent of British Columbians feel they are ready for the worst, that still leaves a large group of people who haven’t acted on their good intentions to prepare and they could get caught by surprise,” says Namita, Kearns, BCAA’s director of insurance products.

While Kearns is hopeful that British Columbians will turn intentions into action, she says she is more concerned about another group who are taking a wait and see approach.

The survey found that 44 per cent say they will deal with it "when and if they need to," and, 43 per cent believe there is nothing they can do to prepare for extreme weather.

The Army Surplus Warehouse in Kelowna says there are a few must-haves for residents this summer in the event of an emergency.

"Everybody should prepare at least a 72-hour kit as we all know, but do not do. The basics, because it can happen day or night, you should always have water and dried food if you can, ways to start a fire and of course everybody should have a flashlight."

"Common sense tells you what you need, but you'd like to keep it light, compact and durable so it can last you quite a while because you don't know where you are going to end up," owner Albert Siemons said.