Posted Tuesday February 5, 2019

Grand River Water Shed

Watershed Conditions Statement – Water Safety

The weather system that moved into southern Ontario over the weekend has brought mild temperatures across the Grand River watershed. These mild temperatures have triggered a gradual melting of the snow pack resulting in runoff into local waterways.

Mild temperatures are forecast to persist through the day on Monday before returning below freezing early Tuesday morning. Light rainfall is expected to accompany this weather system before tapering off late Monday evening. Less than 10mm of rainfall is expected based on the current forecast.

Runoff from this event is not anticipated to result in major flooding and river flows are expected to remain within their banks.

Many local waterways throughout the Grand River watershed are covered in ice at the present time. This ice is much weaker than ice that caused significant ice jams in Cambridge and Brantford last winter; however the potential for ice jams remain wherever ice is present in the river system.

A small ice jam formed this morning along Schneider Creek at Huron Road in Kitchener causing minor localized flooding before releasing. Grand Valley, West Montrose, New Hamburg and Cayuga all face a heightened risk of ice jams at this time of year. Watershed residents should remain cautious as ice jams can form quickly and without warning. Closure of the low level bridge in St. Jacobs may also be required with this event. Flood coordinators are being asked to monitor this area.

The public is reminded to exercise extreme caution and stay off all water bodies at this time. Ice cover, where it exists, will be weakened as a result of the warming trend. Banks adjacent to rivers and creeks are very slippery and, when combined with cold, fast-moving water, pose a serious hazard. Parents are encouraged to keep their children and pets away from all watercourses and off of frozen water bodies.

This message will remain in effect Wednesday, February 6, 2019. Updated flood messages will be issued if necessary as conditions change.

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