Water Safety Statement issued March 13, 2020

Message #2020-13

Issued: 12:00 p.m., Friday, March 13, 2020

SUBJECT: Watershed  Conditions Statement – Water Safety  issued for all watercourses / waterbodies in the Region of Otonabee Conservation. 

ISSUED TO: Municipalities of Selwyn, Douro-Dummer, Asphodel-Norwood, Otonabee-South Monaghan, Cavan Monaghan, City of Kawartha Lakes, City of Peterborough and Trent Hills, and Otonabee Conservation’s other partners in flood emergency management.

A Watershed Conditions Statement – Water Safety is issued when high flows, ice or other factors could be dangerous, but flooding is not expected.

CURRENT WATERSHED CONDITIONS and RISK – Over the past couple of weeks, our Region has been experiencing warmer average daily air temperatures and small rainfall events.  This has resulted in a depletion of the snow pack, ponding water in low lying areas (wetlands, fields) and an increase in flows within ditches, streams and creeks.

Our Region received 5.0mm of rainfall overnight into early hours this morning.  The forecast is for an additional 5mm of rain today Friday March 13.  Over the next 7-days the weather forecast for our Region continues with seasonal conditions of above-zero air temperatures during the day, below-zero air temperatures overnight and very little precipitation.  The combination of warm daytime temperatures, snowmelt and rain will result in run-off to lakes, streams, creeks and wetlands, causing higher than normal water levels and flows, but no flooding.

High water levels and flows will combine with weak ice cover, slippery banks and extremely cold water temperatures to make area waterbodies and watercourses extremely dangerous. In addition, some road-side ditches, wetlands and other low-lying areas will experience ponding due to ice accumulations and frozen ground conditions that inhibit drainage.

It is most important, therefore, that area residents and visitors stay SAFE by Staying Away From the Edge of all watercourses / waterbodies – lakes, canals, rivers, streams, creeks, wetlands and drainage ditches.   Also, where roads and pathways have become inundated due to poor drainage conditions, residents and visitors are strongly advised not to drive, cycle or walk into water that’s moving or more than 10 centimeters (4 inches) deep.

This WATERSHED CONDITIONS STATEMENT will remain in effect until Wednesday, March 18, 2020.


Neil MacFarlane
Flood Forecasting & Warning Duty Officer | 705-745-5791 x 231
250 Milroy Drive, Peterborough, ON K9H 7M9
orcafloodduty@otonabeeconservation.com | Flood Watch Hotline 705-745-5791 x 228