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Good evening, let’s start with today’s top story:

A powerful rain storm swept across southern British Columbia yesterday, unleashing floods and mudslides from Vancouver Island to the Alberta border, and trapping motorists, closing major highways and forcing the evacuation of thousands. Today, the extent of the destruction and disruption started to become apparent.

  • The photos coming out of the B.C. flooding rescue operations and evacuations alone are shocking.
  • Follow our explainer for the latest on what you need to know.

Fatalities have been confirmed

A mudslide on Highway 99 has killed at least one person and emergency crews are still searching the debris field south of Lillooet, B.C., after the unprecedented storm.

Witnesses told emergency officials about 10 vehicles were swept off the road, said David MacKenzie, the Pemberton District Search and Rescue manager. About seven of those have been located. “We’re hopeful to find people alive. But obviously that diminishes with time, the nature of the slide activity. People being caught up in mud and debris, it certainly diminishes as time goes by,” he said.

Search and rescue efforts

Today, search-and-rescue crews were also searching for anyone trapped in mud and debris east of Vancouver near Highway 7.

Emergency officials in Abbotsford, B.C., also announced a new evacuation order this morning affecting about 1,100 people in a rural area known as Sumas Prairie, just north of the U.S. border. The order applies to a largely rural area dotted by dairy and agricultural operations. Police chief Mike Serr said the rescue effort has been incredibly challenging, with water rising quickly.

B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth, in an interview with CBC Tuesday morning, brushed aside suggestions that the province did not adequately prepare residents for the degree of severity of the storm that dumped a month’s worth of winter rains in hours.

Pemberton SAR responded to a mudslide on Duffy Lake Rd/Highway 99 this afternoon as several vehicles caught in mudslide.Pemberton SAR

Supply chain fallout

Now, washouts and mudslides have severed the rail links to the port of Vancouver, Canada’s largest marine hub for freight.

“Quite frankly, we’ll probably be out a couple more days. We’ve got some significant spots,” said Rob Reilly, Canadian National Railway’s chief operating officer. He says it could take several days to repair and restore service to the terminal that handles much of North America’s consumer goods from Asia.

It was still “too early to tell what the ultimate impacts are” said Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd.’s marketing chief, John Brooks, on a conference call with investors.

The climate connection

B.C. has not been able to catch a break recently. The West Coast heat wave this past summer was deadliest weather event in Canadian history, and the patterns of extreme weather were the result of human-caused climate change.

Flooding and other extreme weather events are also linked to a changing climate, and coastal cities experience the additional hazard of rising sea levels. A report from earlier this year found that Canada’s largest cities collectively made little or no progress in preparing for flooding over the past five years.

Records broken: Difference between Nov. 14 rainfall and previous records, by areaThe Globe and Mail


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ALSO ON OUR RADAR

COVID-19′s fourth wave in Western Canada leaves surgeries in limbo: Saskatchewan, Alberta and B.C.’s infection and hospitalization rates have kept surging higher, leading hospitals to cancel elective procedures – but many patients say there’s nothing optional about the treatments they’re waiting for. Here’s what they stand to lose.

Amid soaring prices, retired Canadians are staying in their homes: Watching long-term care residents bare the brunt of the pandemic, retirees want to stay home as long as possible. But with the sudden change in plans come unexpected financial costs. Many older Canadians are not prepared for the high costs of home care, home repairs, and the lack of capital that selling their home would have freed up.

Sexual assault trial in N.S. ends due to killing of accused: The man to be tried, Alexander Thomas of East Preston, N.S., was found dead in a Dartmouth residence on Saturday after what police say was a homicide. As a result, the case was dismissed, leaving unanswered questions about alleged police misconduct in the case. Outside court, Crown lawyers said the police investigation into the sexual assault remains active.

At the Poland-Belarus border: Polish security forces fired water cannon at rock-throwing migrants on the border with Belarus, and NATO reiterated its support for Warsaw in a crisis that has left thousands stranded on the frontier in icy temperatures.

MARKET WATCH

Canada’s main stock index rose on Tuesday as stronger-than-expected U.S. retail sales data bolstered investor sentiment, with the index touching a record intraday high before giving back some of its gains. The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index ended up 34.08 points, or 0.2%, at 21,717.16, after touching its highest intraday level ever at 21,796.16.

Wall Street also gained ground as data showed U.S. retail sales surging 1.7% in October, the largest gain since March. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 54.77 points, or 0.15%, to 36,142.22, the S&P 500 gained 18.1 points, or 0.39%, to 4,700.9 and the Nasdaq Composite added 120.01 points, or 0.76%, to 15,973.86.

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at tips@globeandmail.com. Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop.

TALKING POINTS

The world promised to try to hold climate heating to 1.5 C. That goal is nearly dead

“To combat climate heating requires a never-before-seen level of global co-operation. The world has not been able to overcome domestic self-interest but it has moved relatively quickly in a short amount of time.” - The Editorial Board

Barclays CEO scandal a reminder that regulators need to rethink reputation risks at banks

“Banking is all about relationships, and scandals such as the one affecting Barclays undermines investor and public confidence in financial institutions.” - Rita Trichur

Climate change is increasing global security threats. Canada can help

There are no easy answers to these problems, but our citizens expect action. Pew surveys of advanced economies put climate change as one of the top international threats. The challenge for the [NATO Centres of Excellence] will be focus.” - Colin Robertson

CanMNT World Cup qualifier in the Great White North: Will legends be made of a foot of snow?

”At this crucial moment, Edmonton is Canadian soccer’s shining light on the hill. Okay, you can’t see the light because it’s snowing pretty hard as I write this. But that’s the point. On Tuesday, Canada plays Mexico in Commonwealth Stadium. ... Winning this game will not guarantee Canada qualifies for next year’s World Cup, but it will work as a global threat: Canada’s finally gotten serious (stop). Pack your long johns.” - Cathal Kelly

LIVING BETTER

A flight attendant walks through the TWA Hotel lobby on the grounds of John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, New York on November 16, 2021.TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images

Airport hotels are going luxury

Airport and airport-adjacent hotels have long been considered dreary and soulless accommodations of last resort. But places like Fairmont Vancouver Airport, considered one of the best airport hotels in the world, Langham Hospitality Group’s Cordis Beijing Capital Airport and the recently opened TWA Hotel at New York’s JFK airport are beginning to change that perception.

Toronto’s Sheraton Gateway Hotel is about to complete a massive top-to-bottom $30-million renovation and upgrade. And Richmond, B.C.’s brand-new Versante Hotel, situated just across the Fraser River from Vancouver International Airport, features all the amenities travellers have come to expect from a top-shelf property: gracious service, lavishly appointed rooms, advanced tech and interactive gym gear.

TODAY’S LONG READ

Young lawyers are increasingly saying no to big law firms

As a law and MBA student at McGill University in 2018, Aly Haji watched several friends graduate and pursue their dream of landing jobs at prominent law firms — only to see them quit within a year or two. Curious as to why, he turned the question into his MBA thesis and probed the apparent mismatch between millennials and Big Law. The findings were clear.

“There is a generation gap, a dissatisfaction with working at big firms,” says Haji.

The legal industry, like all parts of the economy, is struggling to find its footing as the pandemic recedes. Part of that means navigating a reset of worker expectations, particularly among young associates who bore much of the brunt of the past two years — first as the target of layoffs and cutbacks when the pandemic took hold, then toiling late into the night as corporate activity surged back to life, but without any of the perks or mentoring their jobs once entailed.

Millennial and Gen Z lawyers and law students are now reassessing their priorities, realizing there are alternatives to working for large firms. Read the full story from ROB Magazine.

Evening Update is written by Sierra Bein and Lori Fazari If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday evening, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.