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Honourable , MLA Thompson
May 1, 2013

Flood Update

I stand in the house today to provide a brief update on the current flood situation.

While the forecast was downgraded last week on the Red River the forecast remains unchanged for the rest of the province.

A flood warning has been issued along the Assiniboine River from Milwood to Virden, and a flood warning continues for the Swan River and its tributaries. People are being urged to remain vigilant along much of the Assiniboine River as there is still ice cover in much of the river and water levels are approaching bank level.

A storm system brought significant precipitation over southern Manitoba in the past 24 hours. Provincial flood forecasters are currently assessing the impact of the snowfall noting that the warm weather over the previous days reduced the winter snowpack significantly.

The Red River is continuing to rise and conditions remain favourable. Water levels at James Avenue in Winnipeg are expected to stabilize over the next 24 hours at 18.7 feet due to Floodway operations. The Red River peaked in Fargo, North Dakota last night.

The unseasonably cold weather has slowed the runoff but it is expected to resume in the next few days.

Significant ice levels developed upstream of the Portage diversion overnight with inflows to the reservoir peaking at more than 16,000 cubic feet per second. Flows through the diversion this morning were approximately 8,800 cubic feet per second, with 8,100 cubic feet per second flow downstream on the Assiniboine River. The high flows on the lower Assiniboine River downstream of the Portage diversion have increased risk of ice jams in the area. The Portage Diversion is being operated to manage the ice.

Manitobans are reminded to remain vigilant as flooding can affect road conditions quickly. Flood liaison offices are now open in Winnipeg, Brandon, Morris and Arborg.