Rivers Dam hits highest level, causing ‘1 000-year’ flooding – Manitoba, Canada


Up to 38 homes and 83 people were evacuated in southern Manitoba on Wednesday night, July 1, 2020, as the Rivers Dam hit its highest level in a "once-in-1 000-year" event, said Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler. The incident was unprecedented and unimaginable, according to Rural Municipality of Riverdale Mayor Todd Gill.

"I don't think anybody could have conceivably anticipated this much water coming at us, and it came at us at an incredibly fast rate," Schuler stated at a news conference Thursday afternoon, July 2.

"The government no longer has confidence in the structure in the dam at Rivers, Manitoba."

Engineers are on-site to monitor the spillway for any signs of trouble, he added. The province also deployed 11 standard emergency response trailers, including water pumps and water tubes.

The water flows from Lake Wahtopanah and the Little Saskatchewan River at the dam are more than 340 cubic m per second (12 000 cubic feet per second), which surpassed the 2011 flood levels.

"The water level at the Rivers Dam is at its highest level, ever," Schuler noted, calling it a "once-in-1 000-year" event.

Heavy downpours have caused water levels to rise in creeks and rivers in the area. The town of Neepawa has already declared a local state of emergency due to high water levels along the Whitemud River.

In areas near the Little Saskatchewan River Valley, Gill said 38 families had evacuated after days of intense rains in the southwest and western Manitoba.

Northwest Saskatchewan was hit by rare flooding this week, which was described as the worst in 46 years.

"It’s not only unprecedented but unimaginable, really," Gill said Thursday. "Never would anybody imagine what we are facing right now."

Hours after the evacuations, people downstream of the dam were keeping an eye on the structure to see if it will withstand the water accumulating over the past days, Gill added.

"People are literally right on site, 24 hours a day, monitoring and studying this structure because it's got a wall of water behind it that nobody has ever seen before," the mayor said.

Some areas have received record-high rainfall of more than 200 mm (8 inches) this week. 

Featured image credit: Donald Lepp.

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One Comment

  1. Quote: “The Rivers Dam reached its highest level, causing a flood of“ 1000 years ”- Manitoba, Canada
    Posted by Julie Heavenly. July 3, 2020 at 13:51. UTC
    Dams and reservoirs should be monitored daily. A stable level in the reservoirs maintains a stable level of subsoil waters that carry out environmental conservation work in Canada:
    They feed productive land and pastures. – Increase the area of productive land and pasture. – Increase the production of agricultural products, meat and fish – And ensure food security.
    They feed the root systems of forests for tens and hundreds of kilometers around.
    In the event of a breakthrough of any dam, the water level in the reservoir will drop by several meters:
    Results: Productive land of pasture will remain without water.
    Without nutrition, the root systems of the forests will remain, which destroy carbon dioxide and poisonous smog in the atmosphere.
    There will be destruction of the hydroelectric power station, and the province or territory will be left without electricity.
    In fact, a dam breakthrough provides disaster in a province or region.
    Sincerely, Environmental Program Developer, Victor Rodin. Ukraine. Khmelnitsky NPP. Tel Kiev Star: 961336344. Mail: dorosydos@gmail.com, rodinviktor@lenta.ru
    — — —
    Цитата: «Плотина Риверс достигла высочайшего уровня, вызвав наводнение «1000 лет» – Манитоба, Канада
    Написал Джули Небесной. 3 июля 2020 года в 13:51. UTC.
    За плотинами и водохранилищами нущно следить ежедневно. Стабильный уровень в водохранилищах поддерживает стабильный уровень подпочвенных вод, которые выполняют работы по сохранению экологии Канады:
    Питают продуктивные земли и пастбища. – Увеличивают площади продуктивных земель и пастбищ. – Увеличивают производство сельхозпродукции, мяса и рыбы – И обеспечивают продовольственную безопасность.
    Питают корневые системы лесных массивов на десятки и сотни километров вокруг.
    В случае прорыва любой дамбы – уровень воды в водохранилище упадёт на несколько метров:
    Итоги: Без воды останутся продуктивные земли пастбища.
    Без питания останутся корневые системы лесных массивов, которые уничтожают в атмосфере углекислый газ и ядовитый смог.
    Будет разрушения гидроэлектростанция, и провинция или территория останется без электричества.
    Практически прорыв дамбы обеспечивает катастрофу в провинции или в регионе.

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