How Winnipeg is preparing for this weekend’s Colorado Low

The City of Winnipeg said crews are ready to work around the clock to deal with the influx of precipitation expected this weekend.

The city said crews will clear ditches, catch basin and culverts of debris as required so water can drain more effectively. It also said officials are monitoring pumping and lift stations, and operating the sewer system and drainage network to move water as efficiently as possible.

This comes after the province’s Hydrologic Forecast Centre predicted the weekend’s oncoming storm could push Manitoba to 2009 flood levels.

The city said it continues to meet with provincial flood forecasters every day, and is monitoring weather and river conditions continuously in order to update its flood response as necessary.

In late March, the city identified 16 properties that could be at-risk of flooding, but officials note only one has so far been advised to build a dike.

As for Friday afternoon, the James Avenue gauge was 17.44 feet.

HOMEOWNERS WARNED TO TAKE PRECAUTIONS

Meanwhile, the city said homeowners who experienced issues during last weekend’s storm are urged to take precautions, noting water can find its way in through cracks in foundations, window wells or failed weeping tiles.

It said flood risk increases in the spring and when river levels rise because the sewer system must rely on pumping stations rather than gravity to carry water runoff.

The city also reminded property owners it is against the law to drain sump pump water into the basement floor drain or any other part of the home’s plumbing system, as it can overtax the sewer system.

TIPS TO PROTECT AGAINST BASEMENT FLOODING

The city also advised Winnipeggers to check their basements often to spot potential flooding early.

If flooding begins, the city recommends taking precautions to protect your safety.

If the water is above electrical outlets, heaters, furnaces, other electronics or your electrical panel, the city said you should not enter your basement as the water could have an electrical current.

When cleaning up, the city said to follow procedures from the Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba, and the Red Cross for what to do after flood waters recede.

The city said materials that are flood damaged should go to the Brady Road Resource Management Facility and not in your garbage or recycling.

It also suggests contacting your insurance company as soon as possible. If you believe you have a claim against the city, you must provide notification immediately after, or as soon as possible after the damage or injury has occurred.

SANDBAGS AVAILABLE FOR RESIDENTS

Additionally, the city said sandbags are available 24 hours a day to residents.

They can be picked up at 1220 Pacific Ave. at the east approach, 1090 Thomas Ave. at the entrance approach and 1539 Waverley St. at the visit parking lot, next to the recycling bins.

Residents must bring identification to demonstrate they live in Winnipeg.

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