Couple who survived fatal Cleveland Dam surge in 2020 sue for damages
A B.C. couple caught up in the surge of water from the Cleveland Dam that killed two people two years ago is suing Metro Vancouver officials for damages.
On Oct. 1, 2020, a drum gate in the North Vancouver dam opened during maintenance, causing water to flood out into the Capilano River south of the dam, according to Chihiro Nakamura and her husband, Mateusz Wiacek.
They say they were visitors to the park area and at the time the drum gate opened, they were sitting on a rock facing south in a shallow part of the river about one kilometre from the dam when suddenly and without warning, Nakamura could hear a rushing sound behind her.
“When her husband turned his head around, he saw a wall of water rushing towards them, and he yelled to the plaintiff sitting beside him to run,” say their lawsuits filed in B.C. Supreme Court. “The height of the rising water was quickly rising around them as they tried to make their way to the shore. The plaintiff slipped and fell getting off of the rock and, in following behind her husband, the force of the roiling waters separated them and she fell farther behind him.”