The province is warning about another precipitation system moving towards already flooded communities in southern Manitoba.
In a flood bulletin Monday afternoon, the province said it’s monitoring a system that could bring between 20 and 50 mm of rain to the area by Friday.
“Depending on the amount, location and intensity of the rainfall, it may affect water levels in some areas of the province,” the latest bulletin said.
The news comes just days after a Colorado low deluged western Manitoba and eastern Saskatchewan with close to 75 mm of rain, with some higher elevations receiving over 125 mm.
The province has put the Parkland region under an overland flood warning due to the recent rains, which officials say mixed with snowmelt from higher elevations is causing “significant run-off.”
The run-off has overwhelmed creeks, rivers and drains and caused flash flooding and significant damage to crossings and other infrastructure, the province said.
“The Parkland region in particular has been affected by road closures and motorists have been asked to avoid the area where possible,” the province said.
“Flash flooding has caused overtopping of roads and damage to bridge and culvert crossings along several highways, provincial roads and many municipal roads.”
Bridges north and south of Mafeking, in western Manitoba, have been severely damaged, which means none of the 130 residents can leave the community north of Swan River by road.
Robert Hanson, reeve of the Rural Municipality of Mountain, said Mafeking’s ambulance is stuck outside the community and anyone needing medical care will have to be taken out by medical helicopter.
Hanson says he and other residents may be able to leave in three days, when a bridge to the north is expected to reopen.
The province said Monday road closures remain in effect on Provincial Trunk Highway (PTH) 20 at Sclater River, PTH 20 from Cowan to Provincial Road (PR) 272, PR 366 and 367 in Duck Mountain Provincial Park, PR 489, PR 271 and PTH 10:
• North of Mafeking at Steep Rock River,
• South of Mafeking at Bell River, and
• at Pine River.
The flooding in western Manitoba is the latest disaster to hit the province, which has been dealing with high water for weeks. The province says 33 local states of emergency are currently in place.
Provincial officials, including Premier Heather Stefanson flew over some of the affected areas Sunday, including the Red River Valley, where Stefanson said water is dropping in the Emerson area and cresting in St. Adolphe.
They also flew north over the Peguis area where some 1,800 people have evacuated homes on the Peguis First Nation, and Stefanson says the water levels there have dropped significantly since she visited the area a couple of weeks ago.
South of Winnipeg, the Red River has started to recede but still resembles a vast lake in many areas, covering farmland and roads.
A section of Highway 75, the main link between the provincial capital and the United States, remained closed.
Johanu Botha, head of emergency management, said Sunday nearly 2,500 people in the province are currently evacuated due to flooding, including just under 2,000 from First Nations.
The province said Sunday that the Red River peaked May 13 at Ste. Agathe, St. Adolphe and the inlet for the Red River Floodway, which diverts floodwater around Winnipeg.
— with files from The Canadian Press
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