Winnipeg authorities are predicting major flooding this spring along the Red River. The communities along the river banks know very well how dangerous floods could be. From the destruction power of moving water, that destroys houses and vehicles, to a deadly danger for people, who get caught by the stream.
Back alleys across Winnipeg are seeing an influx of water as snow packs around the city melt. Back lane floods almost annually, and usually, city crews are on scene within days after receiving a call detailing the flood.
It was never a problem but all of a sudden this year it’s an issue, city crews arrived five days after being called to this back lane in St. James. After five days of repeated 311 calls from residents who occupy the back lane, city crews arrived to thaw the ice and drain the water.
Anyone facing back lane flooding in the coming weeks is being told to expect a similar wait time.
While some flooding may be inevitable, there are ways homeowners in the flood zone or those who live near rising rivers can reduce the damage caused by water.
- You need to keep water flowing away from your house. Have extensions on your leaf troughs, and any water is flowing away.
- You want to want to make sure you have equipment inside your home that’s working. A sump pump is something you want to be testing and making sure it works and it’s ejecting outside.
- Make sure your floor drains are clear so water can flow away. If you do have any valuables, get them out.
- Have a portable pump if a sump pump isn’t installed.
At least 123 properties have been marked as 'at risk' by the City of Winnipeg. Based on municipal`s list, each property is being notified directly. These properties may require dikes and will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
The City is continually reviewing its flood protection measures, including monitoring river levels and filling sandbags. Other Winnipeg properties may still be at risk for overland flooding due to snowmelt. The City has made sandbags available at three locations:
1220 Pacific Avenue
1539 Waverley Street
960 Thomas Avenue
Flood water is a hazard to health and extremely dangerous when moving. Flooding can occur at any time of the year and can be due to many causes from heavy rainfall and blocked drains to burst water mains, tidal ingress and burst river banks. Whatever the cause, flood water presents a general hazard to health.