SURREY (NEWS1130) – The Fraser Health Authority says a construction accident caused a water main break at Surrey Memorial Hospital.
The emergency room is closed and will not reopen for several days. Surrey Memorial has the busiest ER in the province.
For now, ambulances will continue to go elsewhere, and anyone seeking emergency care is asked to go to another hospital.
Fraser Health’s Tasleem Juma says they’ve set up a system in case people still turn up at Surrey Memorial.
“Patients who are arriving at Surrey Memorial with acute or urgent needs are being assessed at a temporary emergency triage in the parkade near the emergency ambulance bay.”
More than 100 elective surgeries have been postponed so far.
The health authority says the chief medical health officer has assessed the water; there is mud in the system but no sewage. Decontamination is not required
Fraser Health asks you to stay away from Surrey Memorial
If you can make it to another hospital, Fraser Health is encouraging you to do so.
Your options include Royal Columbian Hospital across the Pattullo bridge in New Westminster, Peace Arch Hospital in White Rock, or perhaps even hospitals in Langley or Delta.
Roy Thorpe-Dorward with the health authority says they’ve also made plans to deal with those who show up at Surrey Memorial, unaware of what’s happening.
“People showing up unaware of the situation will be redirected to Jim Pattison Centre a few blocks away,” he tells us, noting they normally would not handle ER-type cases.
“We’re asking all visitors or anybody coming to Surrey Memorial Hospital who does not need to come here to go to other locations,” adds Thorpe-Dorward.
BC ambulance is rerouting their calls to other hospitals. Fraser Health notes all non-essential surgeries are being postponed for the time being.
At Royal Columbian Hospital, we spoke with Elizabeth, who is with her sick grandfather. Even with the transportation complications, she is thankful he is finally getting his pneumonia treated.
“We just got transported from the care home, to Surrey Memorial, and then from Surrey to Royal Columbian. It’s okay, I mean as long you get cared for, that’s the number one things for the family.”
Some of the Surrey patients are not taking the situation as well, saying it was an added stress having to drive to get help.