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Flooding imminent?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014   by: Chris Dawson

 

Large ice chunks on the shore of Parks creek near Lakeshore Drive.  The annual dredging of the area creek was done on Tuesday.   Photo by Chris Dawson.

It may be mid March but it certainly looks more like mid January.

The North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority has statistics that support the fact that this is one of the longest winters North Bayite’s have seen in years.

“Snow depth and water content throughout the snow survey areas are above normal for this time of year,” the Conservation Authority stated in a press release describing the snow levels recently measured in the region.

“Of particular note is the snow pack in the North Bay area where both snow depth and water content are twice the amount of what is normally found in the ground.”

Snow is measured for depth and water equivalence at three locations in the watershed. Data for the season can be found on the NBMCA website at www.nbmca.on.ca.

North Bay Golf and Country Club (Chippewa Creek Watershed, North Bay)
Current Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2014
76.5 cm (207% of normal)
Current Average Water Equivalence for March 17, 2014
20.3 cm (202% of normal)
Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2013
42.3 cm
Highest recorded snow depth for March 17 since 1988
93 cm in 2001

Corbeil Conservation Area (La Vase River Watershed, Corbeil)
Current Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2014
72.5 cm (166% of normal)
Current Average Water Equivalence for March 17, 2014
17.8 cm (159% of normal)
Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2013
44.4 cm
Highest recorded snow depth for March 17 since 1987
90.2 cm in 2001

Shirley Skinner Conservation Area (Wasi River Watershed, Chisholm)
Current Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2014
67.3 cm (188% of normal)
Current Average Water Equivalence for March 17, 2014
13.5 cm (132% of normal)
Average Snow Depth for March 17, 2013
Highest recorded snow depth for March 17 since 2006
40.1 cm
67.3 cm in 2014

With more snow in the forecast and colder temperatures looming for the remainder of the month, the risk of flooding is very real.

Conservation Authority Regulations Officer Susan Brownlee has been measuring snow depth for the organization since the mid 1990’s.

Right now she says we are at the mercy of Mother Nature.

“All we can do is keep the public forewarned and continue to monitor the weather through our weather forecasting resources,” said Brownlee in an interview with BayToday.ca on Tuesday.

Brownlee believes the key is to avoid these cold temperatures sticking around and then suddenly receive above average temperatures along with rain.

“Nice sunny days along with cool nights with a bit of wind and no snow would be ideal,” she added.

 

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