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July 25, 2017

Record Rains Cause High Waters Again in Rideau River Watershed

For more information, contact:

  • Patrick Larson
  • RVCA Senior Water Resources Technician
  • 613-692-3571 or 1-800-267-3504 ext. 1210
  • 613-799-9423 (cell)

Flooding has occurred in areas of the Rideau Watershed as a result of rains that were closer to monthly totals than daily amounts.

The community of North Gower has had floodwaters in some homes and in the streets near Stevens Creek. Low-lying areas along the Rideau and its tributaries have also been flooded but no residential flooding has been reported or is expected in those areas at this time.

A weather system moving into eastern Ontario Wednesday night may bring more rain in thunder storms. What impact these storms will have will depend on timing, intensity and size. The decline of today’s high waters can be expected to be slowed if not reversed. Forecasts do not yet indicate how much rain can be expected.

As has been the case each month since February, precipitation amounts for July have been well above normals throughout the region. On several occasions this year, daily rains have set new records including yesterday when all Meteorological Service of Canada climate stations had rainfall well above previous record totals for the day. The Ottawa Airport received 79 millimetres (mm) yesterday compared to the previous 30 year record of 59 mm in 1987. The Brockville Climate Station at the Brockville Airport had 102 mm compared to 77.4 in 2005. Normal for July at the Brockville area station is 88.1 mm. At the RVCA precipitation monitoring station at Portland on Big Rideau Lake 117 mm was recorded.

The impacts of the unusual amounts of rain are obvious in the region. Crops in farm fields are being damaged by standing water. Golf courses and playing fields have had to be closed. With high flows and levels on area streams and lakes, boaters need to be aware of submerged obstacles and careful when approaching partially submerged docks. Mooring boats and securing docks has become a problem with the higher waters.

All residents need to be aware of the dangers around all waterbodies particularly children.

For water level and flow information in the Rideau system as well as the Ottawa River, visit the RVCA Streamflows and Water Levels webpage at .

For more information about conditions on the Ottawa River, check the webpage of the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board at .