The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry – North Bay District is advising residents in the Lake Temagami/Sturgeon River/Lake Nipissing/Upper French River and the Upper Ottawa River areas that the following flood warning remains in effect until Monday, June 3:
Description of Weather System
The North Bay District forecast is calling for a complex weather system over the next five days with a chance of thunderstorms which could increase rainfall amounts significantly.
If thunderstorms do not occur, precipitation amounts will range from a trace amount to 5 mm.
Daytime highs for the same period are forecast to range from 10-20 degrees Celsius with nighttime lows ranging from 0-8 degrees Celsius across the district.
Description of Current Conditions
The affected area for the flood warning has experienced significant increases in water levels and stream flows over the past month and a half.
The combination of repeated rainfall and snowmelt has resulted in water levels in the area rising significantly, reaching or exceeding flood levels in many areas.
In some locations the ground is saturated and as a result has little ability to absorb further precipitation.
Further significant rainfall events could increase the potential for flooding and further impact currently flooded areas.
The Lake Temagami, Sturgeon River, Lake Nipissing, Upper French River and Upper Ottawa River areas have been impacted by higher than normal water levels.
Lake Nipissing water levels are currently sitting at 196.54 m, well above the Maximum ‘Non-Damage’ water level of 196.22 m, while the Ottawa River at Mattawa currently sits at
154.20 m and is declining daily as Lake Temiskaming levels subside and dam outflow at the Temiskaming dam is decreased.
Higher than normal water levels and flows are expected to continue in the Lake Temagami, Sturgeon River, Lake Nipissing and French River area if it receives wind and precipitation (e.g. thunderstorms) currently forecasted.
High winds and heavy rainfall associated with thunderstorms could pose a significant risk and cause additional damages.
Residents along the French River continue to see higher than normal water levels. Levels and flows could be increased over the next several days and remain high based on forecasted wind and precipitation (e.g. thunderstorms).
On Lake Temagami, Lake Nipissing and the French River, boaters are being urged to stay away from shorelines and flood affected areas so that vessel movements do not pose a risk to the safety of individuals or cause damage to the environment, properties and infrastructure.
Due to safety concerns and the higher than normal water levels safety booms in the following locations have not been installed at:
• Latchford Dam
• Temiskaming Dam
• French River Dams (Big Chaudiere, Little Chaudiere and Portage); and
• Hurdman Dam.
Recreational users (boats, jet skis, canoes, kayaks, etc.) are urged to stay away from dams and flood affected areas as high water levels and strong currents are dangerous for watercraft and pose a serious safety risk.
Reports of large debris (e.g. logs, docks, decks, etc.) are also being reported in flood affected waters and pose an additional safety risk to recreational users.
Water levels in the Upper Ottawa River area including the Town of Mattawa and Mattawan and Papineau-Cameron Townships remain high but are expected to slowly decrease.
Rainfall associated with potential thunderstorms could cause an increase in water levels in the area.
Municipalities and residents, especially those in low-lying areas and along shorelines, are encouraged to monitor these conditions and prepare accordingly.
Shorelines and banks adjacent to rivers and creeks are very slippery and unstable at this time and, when combined with cold open water, pose a serious hazard.
Road closures and sand bagging efforts continue across much of the North Bay District and many area residents have been impacted by localized flooding.
A close watch on local forecasts and conditions is recommended.