Manitoba flood bulletin #5: April 16, 2014

Province of Manitoba media bulletin


  • Prolonged temperatures of as much as 15 degrees cooler than normal have prevented ice breakup on the Red River from Emerson to Winnipeg. The ice remains 10 to 20 per cent thicker than normal for this time of year.
  • The Red River at Emerson is expected to peak on April 18 or 19 at a flow of approximately 35,000 cubic feet per second (cfs).
  • The Red River upstream of the floodway inlet is expected to peak between April 20 and 22 at a flow of approximately 40,000 cfs.
  • It is estimated with an open-water crest, levels at James Avenue would reach 16.2 to 16.7 feet.
  • However, given the long-range temperature forecast, it is anticipated that ice along the Red River upstream of the floodway inlet and within the city of Winnipeg may still be intact when the Red River crests within the city.
  • If it remains intact, the ice cover would induce a higher than normal crest producing a flow of 40,000 cfs. It is estimated the Red River water level at James Avenue could see an ice induced crest of 18.2 to 18.7 ft. with approximately 5,000 cfs spilling naturally into the floodway channel. Generally, 18 ft. at James Avenue is a signal to the city that a small number of low-lying properties may need additional flood protection.
  • It is expected that higher ice-induced water levels will be experienced in south Winnipeg and the Manitoba government is working closely with the City of Winnipeg to identify potential issues and to address changing conditions.
  • The floodway cannot operate effectively unless ice on the Red River is flowing freely.
  • The Portage Diversion will continue to be operated to limit flows to 5,000 cfs along the lower Assiniboine River to minimize the risk of ice jams.

Spring Safety

People are reminded to:

  • be watchful of local waterways as flood conditions can develop quickly and ice conditions may be unsafe;
  • stay away from ice and water, and not drive or walk through fast moving water; and
  • call 511 to check road conditions before travelling.

Questions or concerns about flooding or water management should be directed first to the municipal authority. Anyone with questions about water levels, provincial waterways or provincial water-control infrastructure can call 204-945-8373 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., seven days a week.

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