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Rain and Above Normal Temperatures Increase Flows and Raise Lake Levels

Water Safety Statement- Update #1

January 06, 2023 — Warmer temperatures and rainfall over the last week has produced significant snow melt and runoff across the Mississippi and Carp River watersheds. As a result, flows have increased significantly and ice stability has been compromised across the watershed.  

Flows are excepted to peak over the next few days but will remain higher than normal for the month of January as excess water moves through the system. 

Large river systems and inland lakes are not expected to flood at this time, although, ice jams can form along the river. This can cause water levels to rise quickly without warning. Nuisance flooding is likely to occur around small watercourses, urban areas, and ditches. Residents in flood prone areas are advised to maintain a close watch on levels and flows and take the necessary precautions to protect their property by:

  • Ensuring sump pumps are clear and in good working condition
  • Removing or securing items that might float away as flows increase.

Ice conditions can change drastically due to increased flows and rising temperatures.  The shoreline adjacent to lakes, rivers and creeks is very slippery and poses a serious hazard. Falling into open water could result in hypothermia or drowning.

The Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority (MVCA) reminds the public to exercise extreme caution around all water bodies:

  • The public and pets should stay off all frozen water bodies.
  • Parents are urged to remind children about the dangers of playing on or near ice covered surfaces and open water.

This Watershed Conditions Statement is in effect until the end of the day on Thursday, January 26, 2023 or an update is issued.  Please visit the MVCA’s website for more information on:

  • Water levels and flow data: mvc.on.ca/water-levels
  • Watershed Conditions Messages: mvc.on.ca/watershed-conditions-message.

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Contact: Jennifer North

Water Resources Technologist
613-253-0006 ext. 243
jnorth@mvc.on.ca               www.mvc.on.ca


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Newsrooms please note:

A Watershed Conditions Statement is NOT a flood warning. Its purpose is to raise public awareness about a change or potential change in watershed conditions.

See below for watershed conditions terminology:

Watershed Conditions Statement: general notice of weather conditions that could pose a risk to personal safety or which have the potential to lead to flooding. There are two variations of these:

  • Water Safety Statement: High flows, unsafe banks, melting ice or other factors could be dangerous for recreational users such as anglers, canoeists, hikers, children, pets, etc. Flooding is not expected.
  • Flood Outlook Statement: Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.

Flood Watch: Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.

Flood Warning: Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities and individuals should act to deal with flood conditions. This may include road closures and evacuations.

The following, colour coded symbols describe the watershed conditions. This is always indicated throughout our website.

Normal status indicates that no flood conditions exist. However, even during Normal conditions, the inherent risk to personal safety associated with flowing water still exists.

Watershed Conditions Statement - Water Safety: High flows, unsafe banks, melting ice, or other factors that could be dangerous for recreational users such as anglers, canoeists, hikers, children, pets, etc. Flooding is not expected.

Watershed Conditions Statement - Flood Outlook: Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding, or erosion.

Flood Watch: Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services, and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.

Flood Warning: Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities.