WINNIPEG – City officials say water levels along the Red River may peak this weekend and up to 50 at risk properties may require sandbag dikes.
If Winnipeg sees open-water conditions the Red River will peak at 18.6 feet above normal winter ice levels at James Avenue.
Ice jams, however, could lead to the Red River to peak at 20.8 feet at James Avenue, which is considered a major flood and would require cautionary sandbagging. That level is similar to the crest of the 2011 spring flood.
The City said they are preparing for the higher of the two levels.
“We have recently observed increasing flows along the Red River yesterday, which caused us to identify a small number of properties along the Red River system that would require some temporary sandbagging,” said Chris Carroll, Manager of Waste Water Services with the City of Winnipeg.
Carroll said the number of homes to be sandbagged all depends on what the river levels will be this weekend, but officials have already started contacting the affected property owners.
Up to 75,000 sandbags will be made available to property owners.
“We’re in action mode today and we’re confident that we’ll be able to get the sandbags out and get the dikes built for this weekend,” said Ken Allen of the City of Winnipeg public works department.
In 2011, 500 homes were deemed at risk and in need of sandbagging. So far in 2017, only a few dozen have been identified.