No evacuation orders expected as Calgary River water levels peak, officials say


Although this week’s storm has already led to widespread power outages, falling trees and pooling of water on city streets, city officials say they believe they are well equipped to cope. to whatever the next few days will bring.

The city remains under a local state of emergency declared Monday.

At a press briefing on Tuesday afternoon, Susan Henry, head of Calgary’s Emergency Management Agency, said city officials will continue to monitor the river.

“We don’t have any evacuation orders, and we don’t think we need to issue any evacuation orders in the next few days,” Henry said.

But given the dynamic weather patterns and how quickly conditions on the river can change, Henry cautioned: “We’re not off the hook yet.”

The last:

  • Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek says the city took a break as some of the forecast rain in the mountains fell as snow, which helped reduce the amount of runoff from the rainstorm.
  • She says 25 mm of precipitation officials believed the rain was actually snow.
  • According to the city, Calgary received 75-100 mm of precipitation so far. The system begins to decrease with up to 40 mm of rain expected today.
  • Authorities say it is raining in the Bow and Elbow rivers was significantly below the upper limit of what had been expected.
  • City officials have closed part of Memorial Drive build a temporary berm. Construction is progressing well and will be finished later Tuesday.
  • During this time, Memorial Drive will remain closed until the peak of the event passed through the city.
  • There are water pooling on some Calgary roads now.
  • From 4 p.m. on Tuesdays, Bowness Park, St. Patrick’s Island and Prince’s Island Park have closed.
  • Environment Canada issued a wind warning shortly after 11:30 a.m., warning that wet ground from continued rain could lead to an increased risk of tree falls.
  • Enmax said it works for restore power at various locations in the city. More than 6,500 Calgarians experienced outages for a time, although power has since been out. returned to certain communities.
  • Altadore, Banff Trail, Bankview, Brentwood, Bridgeland/Riverside, Charleswood, Cliff Bungalow, Collingwood, Crescent Heights, Elbow Park, Greenview, Highland Park, Lake Bonavista, Mount Pleasant, Renfrew, Richmond, Sarboro, South Calgary, Spruce Cliff, Tuxedo Park, University of Calgary, Upper Mount Royal and Winston Heights/Mountview all had breakdowns from 2:30 p.m.
  • The Tsuutʼina nation was also experiencing a breakdown from 2:30 p.m.
  • A flood warning previously issued for the main stretch of the Highwood River from the town of High River to the confluence of the Bow River was downgraded to a high debit notice.
  • Plans to build a permanent berm to protect the community of Bowness are on break. The authorities are looking for an alternative solution.
  • Nautical Notices are in place for the Bow and Elbow Rivers. Access to leisure at Glenmore Reservoir is limited.
  • Bowness Park, St. Patrick’s Island and Prince’s Island Park will be closed from 4 p.m. on Tuesday

Sunnyside resident Colton O’Reilly said last night he had received an emergency signal and was waiting to see what happened next.

“We keep our eyes on the river,” he said.

Sunnyside resident Colton O’Reilly says he hopes mitigation efforts put in place over the past few years can prevent damage on the scale of the 2013 floods. (Charlotte Dumoulin/Radio Canada)

This closure was made for the construction of a temporary berm that crosses Memorial Drive. City officials decided to take the mitigation action on Monday given the forecast for the next few days.

“There are no floods yet, but it is a protective measure if the water level reaches what we think it could,” Henry told the Calgary Eyeopener on Tuesday morning.

City officials had previously lowered the Glenmore Reservoir to alleviate the inflow of water. For that reason, officials weren’t concerned about the Elbow River on Tuesday morning – bearing in mind that things could change as forecasts change.

Environment Canada issued a wind warning shortly after 11:30 a.m., warning that wet ground from continued rain could lead to an increased risk of falling trees. (Charlotte Dumoulin/Radio Canada)

“Things are definitely under control. We learned a lot in 2013,” Henry said, referring to the combination of rapidly melting snow in the mountains and seemingly endless rainfall that caused $5 billion in damage and damage. killed five people in southern Alberta in 2013.

“The fact that we are talking about this a few days before the peak of the river is expected is actually very good news.”

Susan Henry, head of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency, left, speaks at an emergency management committee meeting on Tuesday morning. The city was waiting to see the Tuesday afternoon forecast before making any decisions on possible evacuations. (Radio Canada)

On Monday, Mayor Gondek said the local state of emergency allows police and firefighters to go door to door in the event of an evacuation.

It also allows the city’s water services team access to the property to protect critical infrastructure and quickly secure supply if needed.

The town of High River, which was devastated in the 2013 floods, was previously under a flood warning. This has been downgraded to a high debit advisory.

The city has built flood mitigation infrastructure since 2013.

“Emotions are still running high in this town, and I don’t think that will go away for a lot of people for the rest of our lives,” High River Mayor Craig Snodgrass said at a press briefing on Tuesday. .

“It’s just about making sure we’re always on top of things…we can never be complacent.”

High River Mayor Craig Snodgrass spoke at a press briefing on Tuesday morning. A previously issued flood warning for High River has been downgraded to a high flow advisory. (Radio Canada)

In a warning issued shortly after 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Environment Canada said periods of heavy rain would continue through the evening before ending on Wednesday.

The heaviest rains are expected to fall in the west, the agency said, with rainfall totals of 150mm or more possible along the foothills and front of the Rocky Mountains.

On Tuesday, the Municipal District of Bighorn declared a local state of emergency.

During a press briefing, Alberta Environment and Parks Minister Jason Nixon reiterated that the provincial government stands ready to provide assistance to affected communities as needed.

He added that municipalities can request flood mitigation equipment from provincial stockpiles through the Alberta Emergency Management Agency.

Lisa Jackson, executive director of environmental emergency management for Alberta Environment and Parks, said the heaviest rainfall since Sunday has been in areas west of Sundre, west of Calgary and south of Pincher Creek, with local amounts up to 110 millimeters.

Sundre is located approximately 110 kilometers northwest of Calgary. Pincher Creek is about 100 kilometers west of Lethbridge in the southwest corner of the province.

Jackson also reported that several areas have been downgraded from a flood warning to a high flow advisory: the Bow River in Banff, Canmore and Exshaw, tributaries of the Bow River above Calgary, as well as the Elbow River. , the Highwood River and Fish Creek.

The Red Deer River has been downgraded from a flood warning to a flood watch, although a flood warning remains in place for the Little Red Deer River.

There is a new flood watch in place for Waterton Lake, Jackson said.

Map of the City of Calgary flood risk areas for current precipitation:

This map from the Calgary Emergency Management Agency shows the areas most at risk of flooding amid the current rainfall:


About Author

Comments are closed.