More Winnipeg properties at risk and Red River not expected to crest for more than a week

The City of Winnipeg has announced more properties are at risk of flooding as river levels continue to rise. 

The Red River is expected to peak at the floodway inlet some time between May 11 and 14. 

On Tuesday, the city announced it had identified 27 properties at risk, up from 16 when it last released a flood bulletin, on March 28.

A total of 17 properties have been told to build dikes by Friday. That includes 13 properties that were identified in March.

Three properties along the Assiniboine River that were identified in March are no longer considered at risk, the city said.

Another 10 properties are now being advised to be prepared to build a dike “as required.” All 10 are newly identified as at risk of flooding.

Approximately 29,000 sandbags are needed to protect these properties, and the city is also raising the clay dike near Turnbull Drive.

The city is delivering notices to the affected properties and will survey the land to determine where to build the dikes.

No call for volunteers is being issued at this point, the city said.

Between May 5 and 14, water levels on the Red River are expected to range between 19 and 20.4 feet above normal winter ice level at James Avenue, a measurement known as “feet James.” 

As of Tuesday morning, the Red was at 18.2 feet James. The highest level Winnipeg has seen so far this spring was 18.9 feet James, on April 30.

Provincial hydrologist Fisaha Unduche’s forecast on Friday was for the spring flood on the Red River to approach the volume of the 2009 flood, which had a peak flow of 97,000 cubic feet per second south of Winnipeg at the floodway inlet.

Unduche said the crest this spring could be 94,000 to 121,000 cubic feet per second at the floodway inlet.

Despite the flow projection, the Red in Winnipeg is not expected to rise as high as it did in 2009, when high flows on the Assiniboine River drove up water levels north of The Forks.

Southern Manitoba received a historic amount of precipitation in April. Winnipeg saw 118 millimetres — the most the city has gotten in April since 1896, when 143 millimetres fell, Environment Canada says.

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