Current Watershed Conditions
 Flood Outlook Statement
Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (SSMRCA)
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Current Watershed Conditions


Rivers and Streams - Flood Outlook Statement

Date: March 27, 2020

Time: 3:00 p.m.

This statement is in effect until April 10, 2020


The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority would like to issue a watershed conditions statement to residents regarding current watershed conditions.

The weather forecast for the next few days indicates a continuing warming trend. Rainfall amounts will likely be in the range of 40-45mm for two days total (Saturday and Sunday). Daytime warm temperatures have resulted in the melting of some snowpack. We anticipate a faster than normal melting event with warm temperatures over the next few days.

Currently, local rivers, creeks, and streams are flowing at normal levels. Continued snowmelt, warm temperatures, supplemented by rainfall will cause levels and flows to rise across the watershed. There may be localized flooding in areas with poor drainage.

The flood control channels owned and maintained by the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority are currently flowing at normal levels. The flood control channels will experience a rise in water levels. It is important to remember that the water in rivers, streams and the channels will be cold and fast flowing during and after the rainfall event.

The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority will continue to closely monitor stream flows across the watershed.

The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority would like to extend a warning to residents and visitors to use extreme caution when close to rivers, creeks, and streams. High water levels and flows can be especially dangerous and stream banks can be slippery. Please keep children and pets away from fast flowing rivers and streams.

Lake Superior Shoreline - Flood Outlook Statement


Date: March 18, 2020

Time: 12:30 pm

This statement is in effect until (or updated before) April 20, 2020.


The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (SSMRCA) is advising that Lake Superior water levels remain well above normal. There are observations, reports, or expectations of shoreline erosion or flooding currently.

Conditions across the Great Lakes were drier in last month and the water levels of Lake Superior declined more than they typically do in February. Nonetheless, an exceptional volume of water remains in the system and all of the Great Lakes remain near or above record-high water levels for this time of year. Water levels are expected to remain high over at least the next several months and further record-highs are possible if wet conditions continue in 2020. As a result, there will continue to be a significantly increased risk of shoreline erosion, lakeshore flooding and coastal damages over the next several weeks and into the spring.

Currently, Lake Superior water levels are approximately 183.58 m IGLD85. Lake Superior declined 10 cm over the course of the month, while on average the water level declines 5 cm in February. At the beginning of March, Lake Superior is just 4 cm below the record-high beginning-of-month level set in 1986. The level is currently 33 cm above average (1918 – 2019) and at the same level recorded at this time a year ago. For additional reference, the SSMRCA shoreline flooding hazard level used for planning and development review is 184.2 m

SSMRCA advises all shoreline property owners to prepare for potentially severe coastal impacts such as significant erosion, flooding and other public safety hazards, especially during periods of strong winds and high waves.

SSMRCA staff continue to monitor Lake Superior wind conditions and lake levels closely.

This statement is in effect until (or updated before) April 20, 2020.

For further information contact:
Anjum Amin, P.Eng.
705-946-8530 ext.# 1003