(WCS – NG01/2020)
March 10, 2020 – The mild weather yesterday and today has melted a significant amount of snow in the Rideau Valley Watershed. This snow melt together with some rainfall is causing the water levels to rise quickly in Stevens Creek and Taylor Drain. Based on new water level gauges installed in the spring of 2019, it appears that the water may breach the banks and cause localized flooding within the low-lying areas along Stevens Creek and Taylor Drain in the Village of North Gower. The timing of the potential breach will depend on the temperatures and rainfall amounts over the coming days. The short-term forecast is indicating mostly daytime temperatures above zero with overnight temperatures below zero, as well as up between 10 to 15 mm of rain on Friday. If the forecast plays out, the fluctuating temperatures should slow down the rapid snow melt we are currently experiencing, although Friday’s rainfall and mild temperatures could cause more flooding.
With the changing levels that can be expected over the coming days, all waterways in the North Gower area will continue to be unstable. Extreme caution should be exercised by everyone when near local waterbodies. Parents should inform their children of the risks and provide appropriate supervision.
Residents in flood-prone or low-lying areas, historically susceptible to flooding, should take the necessary precautions to protect their property, such as:
- Ensuring sump pump is clear, in good working condition and has a backwater valve
- Ensuring easy access to a portable backup generator and pump
- Ensuring downspouts are clear and the outlet is at least 3 metres from the dwelling
- Securing items that might float away as flows increase
- Removing valuable items from basements or lower floors that could be subject to flooding
- Keeping emergency phone numbers handy
- Familiarizing yourself with your municipality’s Emergency Preparedness Plan
This watershed conditions statement is in effect until March 31, 2020, at 5 p.m. and will be updated at that time unless the forecast or conditions change.
"Rideau Valley Conservation Authority is a partnership of municipalities within the Rideau Valley watershed created under the Conservation Authorities Act to deliver a range of programs in watershed management and natural resource conservation."
RVCA Watershed Conditions Statements:
- Water Safety – High flows, unstable 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.
- Flood Outlook – Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts, calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high winds or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams and/or lakeshore flooding or erosion.
- Flood Watch – Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individuals in flood prone areas should prepare.
- Flood Warning – Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities.