City of Winnipeg: Flood Bulletin #2

Released:

April 9, 2019 2:20 pm

Winnipeg, MB – Due to favourable weather conditions and the anticipated use of the floodway, the City of Winnipeg has revised its flood planning level and is reducing the number of properties that may require a dike to protect from river flooding.

To determine at-risk properties, the City is now planning to use a peak of 19.6 feet at the James Avenue gauge. The peak is expected to arrive in Winnipeg over the Easter long weekend. The City had originally been planning for a peak of 20.5 feet.

Previously, the City had identified 123 properties that might be at risk of river flooding and might require dikes. We are now projecting that only 18 of these properties might still need a dike, requiring a total of 14,400 sandbags. The City is contacting these property owners directly to discuss next steps. Notices are being hand-delivered to those properties no longer considered at risk, advising them to remain on standby in the event conditions change.

The City has started delivering sandbags to those properties that might require a sandbag dike, and will work with affected property owners to provide support to construct sandbag dikes as needed. The City has an adequate number of sandbags and is not producing additional sandbags at this time. A clay dike is being built at one location, instead of using sandbags.

The City is not putting out a call for volunteers to assist property owners with sandbagging efforts at this time.

Additional precipitation or a change in ice conditions could alter the number of properties at risk. The City will continue to monitor river levels and weather conditions, while working closely with the Province of Manitoba, to adapt protection measures accordingly and release additional flood bulletins when necessary.

If a property owner has not heard from the City and believes their property is at risk of river flooding, they can contact 311.

The City continues to undertake other flood mitigation activities, including monitoring river levels and ice movement, making preparations for temporary and permanent pumping, closing river gates and sealing manholes.

As of 2:08 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9, the river level at the James Avenue gauge was 12.42 feet. River levels are available online at City of Winnipeg – River Levels and updated in real time every 10 minutes.

Basement flooding
Homeowners are reminded to take steps to protect their homes and property against basement flooding. Although basement flooding is a risk at any time of the year, the risk increases in the spring and when river levels rise because the sewer system must rely heavily on pumping stations rather than gravity to carry the water runoff due to higher river levels.

Homeowners are reminded to take the following steps to protect their homes and property:

  1. To ensure maximum protection against basement flooding, arrange for a licensed plumber to install a sewer line backup valve and a sump pit with pump in the basement.
  2. Inspect backup valves and sump pump drainage systems to make sure they are functioning properly.
  3. Ensure drainage is directed away from the home by extending downspouts away from the basement walls and ensuring the earth is built up around the house.

Property owners are reminded it is against the law to drain sump pump water into the basement floor drain or any other part of the house plumbing system, as it can overtax the sewer system placing their basement and those of their neighbours at risk of flooding and damage.

Residents are encouraged to follow the City of Winnipeg on Facebook and Twitter (#WpgFlood), for flood updates as well as reviewing flood information online at winnipeg.ca/emergweb.

Waterway Safety
Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution near waterways this spring due to the presence of ice on and beneath the surface of the water and fast moving current. Parents and teachers are urged to speak to children and students about the dangers of waterways.

At this time, the Assiniboine river walk is closed to pedestrians. The City maintains the pathway through Mostyn Park which connects to the river walk at the Legislative Building stairs up to Queen Elizabeth Way.

Residents are also advised that City boat launches are closed until further notice.

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