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


Rivers and Streams - Flood Outlook Update


Date: September 3, 2020

Time: 1:00 p.m.

This statement is in effect until September 9, 2020


The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority would like to issue a watershed conditions statement to residents regarding current watershed conditions. Flood forecasting and warning is part of the Conservation Authority’s provincially mandated responsibilities. This statement is sent out so that residents can be informed and aware.

A weather system is currently moving through northeastern Ontario, bringing strong winds and precipitation across the watershed. Sustained values are expected to range from 30 to 50 km/h, with gusts potentially exceeding 80 km/hr. The forecasted strong winds across the upper Great Lakes may result in increased water levels due to minor storm surge and wave heights reaching or exceeding 2 m. This may result in minor shoreline flooding, wave uprush, and increased erosion.

Forecast precipitation over the next five days ranges from 40 to 70 mm. There is the potential for moderate thunderstorm development this evening until tomorrow morning. Thunderstorms with rain can produce local amounts of 30 to 50 mm.

Currently, local rivers, creeks, and streams are flowing at normal levels. If isolated thunderstorms with high intensity and a short duration occur over areas that become saturated by general rainfall, there is a risk of overland flooding of low-lying areas.

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 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.


Shoreline Conditions Statement - Lake Superior Flood Watch



Date: September 8, 2020

Time: 4:30 p.m.

This statement is in effect until (or updated before) October 13, 2020.

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

Water levels of Lake Superior remain near or above record highs. Water levels are expected to remain high over at least the next few months and further record-highs are possible if wet patterns develops.

Currently, lake Superior water level is approximately 183.8 m IGLD85. Lake Superior remained stable last month, as it normally does in August (1918-2019). The level is currently 26 cm above average (1918-2019). 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, lakeshore flooding, coastal damages, beach submersion, crawl space and septic system inundation especially during periods of strong winds and storm surge.

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

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