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City of Ottawa opens sandbag sites, but not expecting terrible flood season

Snowpack in the local watershed is below average.
USED 2020-04-06 Ottawa River MV3
Ottawa River, Ottawa. Mike Vlasveld/ OttawaMatters

This year's spring thaw is not expected to bring much flooding to the Ottawa area -- certainly, not anywhere near levels seen in 2019.

The City of Ottawa's Emergency Operations Centre for the Spring Freshet says with the delayed snowfall this winter, there is an average to slightly below average snowpack in the Ottawa River watershed.

Jim Lethbridge, commander of the centre says this is in contrast with 2019 when local conservation authorities were reporting a snowpack above seasonal norms. Simply put, flooding this year should not be as bad as the flooding in 2019.

City officials, however, say the water levels on the Ottawa River and Rideau River will increase in the coming weeks as a result of warmer weather and rainfall, and as a result, low-lying areas may see flooding.

For residents who want to fill their own sandags to protect their property, eight stations have already been opened by the city. They are located at:

  • 29 Hurdman Road
  • 911 Industrial Avenue
  • 2264 Colonial Road (Navan)
  • 2145 Roger Stevens Drive
  • 4244 Rideau Valley Drive
  • 2941 March Road
  • 4127 John Shaw (Kinburn)
  • 2481 Scrivens Drive

The City of Ottawa asks residents to maintain proper COVID-19 distancing measures if others are also at the site.

Messages and suggested social media posts, in both English and French, will be provided by the city in the coming days.


Victoria Williston

About the Author: Victoria Williston

Stay connected by listening to the capital's favourite morning show with Victoria Williston and Andrew Boyle on CityNews Ottawa between 5 a.m. and 9 a.m. on 101.1 FM or 1310 AM.
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