FINCH — Based on above-freezing temperatures today and tomorrow, a significant amount of snowpack is expected to melt across the South Nation River watershed, causing flows and water levels to rise quickly. The local conservation authority warns that ice cover in rivers and streams may break up as a consequence, increasing the risk of ice jams and over-bank flooding as well as local nuisance flooding.
The snowpack throughout the watershed is slightly greater than usual but still within ranges recorded in recent years. For the moment, stream flows are also within the normal range for this time of year.
However, Environment Canada has been calling for minor precipitation through tomorrow, adding to the pressure of additional meltwater with the rising mercury.
South Nation Conservation (SNC) advises residents to stay away from rivers as the weather forecast may rapidly increase water flows, and banks might be unstable and slippery. Parents are encouraged to explain these dangers to their children.
In its flood outlook statement in effect until March 24, SNC also suggests that residents in flood prone or low-lying areas take the necessary precautions to protect their property, such as:
• Ensuring sump pump is clear, in good working condition and has a backwater valve on it.
• Having a portable generator and backup pump available.
• Ensuring downspouts are clear and the outlet is at least 3 m from the dwelling.
• Removing or securing items that might float away as flows increase.
• Removing valuable items from basements or lower floors that could be subject to flooding.
• Keep emergency phone numbers handy.
• Familiarize yourself with your municipality’s emergency preparedness plan.
SNC monitors water levels and weather forecasts as part of the Flood Forecasting and Warning Program, updating the information as conditions change. The organization welcomes feedback on water-related conditions at email@example.com, as well as Facebook (/SouthNationConservation) and Twitter (@SouthNationCA).