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Spring Flooding Update from City's Emergency and Protective Services

This is an update on the City’s posture in relation to spring flooding, as well as to share the guidance we are providing to residents based on current conditions.

In terms of a “Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF)”: conditions along the Ottawa River are stable and even decreasing slightly, but we are asking residents to remain vigilant and not to take down their sandbags just yet.




CURRENT FORECAST


Water levels along the main stem of the Ottawa River are expected to be fairly stable or to decrease slightly in all locations over the next few days. Overall, we are still within a 1 in 10-year flood event range.

The risk is trending in the right direction, but we are still somewhat early in the flood season.

CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE


Since late last week, we are seeing some minor flooding in low-lying, flood-prone areas. This has resulted in three road closures in West Carleton, an impact to a path west of the Ron Kolbus Community Centre parking lot in Britannia, and no access to:

· Petrie Island (Cumberland)

· Blair Road boat launch (Rothwell Heights)

There are still no impacts to any of the City’s assets that are managed by the Infrastructure and Water Services Department.

GUIDANCE TO RESIDENTS


The City is encouraging residents to continue to monitor flood forecasts and to take the necessary actions to prepare/protect their properties – that includes ensuring that the sandbags they have put in place are not taken down too early. It is best to monitor and maintain current protective measures at this time.

Our guidance to residents this week is to stay the course.

Having said that though, we know that residents like planning ahead. As a result, we will be posting guidance on our website shortly about the process for proper sandbag removal/disposal. We are also starting to receive questions about well water testing. While inspections cannot be performed until flood waters recede, we will also share guidance about this topic.

RESIDENTIAL SUPPORTS


The City has observed that residents in West Carleton, Britannia and Cumberland have been taking appropriate measures to protect their properties.

City staff have filled approximately 45,000 sandbags for distribution to higher-risk neighbourhoods. This, coupled with volunteer-led initiatives in West Carleton, has provided a steady source of filled sandbags for residents in flood-prone areas to access. The City also continues to have sand and empty sandbags available at approximately 25 sites across the city for self-filling and take-away.

The City is not going to organize its own volunteer sandbag-filling initiative this week. We have assessed that the conditions are such that a surge effort of this nature is not required at this time. We would also like to reserve some volunteer capacity for later, should it be necessary to seek that additional level of support.


Best regards,


Beth Gooding

Director | Directrice

Public Safety Service | Service de sécurité publique

Emergency and Protective Services | Services d'urgence et de protection

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