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Water Today Title October 25, 2020

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Advisory of the Day



This story is brought to you in part by Energy Systems & Designs

By Cori Marshall

The spring thaw has water levels rising in many parts of Canada. New Brunswick and Fredericton, in particular, have been affected by the rising temperatures and melting snow and ice. To get an understanding of the situation we reached out to the New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization (NB EMO) who are in the midst of their River Watch 2018.

We spoke with Shawn Berry, Communications NB EMO, who explained that Saint John "River levels are stable, though they are expected to remain at flood levels for the coming days."

"Dozens of transportation assets have been impaired," and the population, "is advised to call 511 for more information and road conditions," Berry said.

The population is "advised not to drive or boat" in these conditions. Berry explained that the danger is that "you can't see the debris, and you can't determine the depth of the water." He explained that "floodwater is fast-moving and very cold, it may contain trees and ice."

The high water did not come as a surprise as a number of people left before the water reached flood stage. Berry said that the current situation "has affected 37 houses and 45 people." he added that "22 homes have registered with the Red Cross for housing assistance." The rest have found temporary lodging with friends and family.

The number of homes and evacuees includes those affected in Bathurst and Edmonston as well. NB EMO is coordinating with first responders in affected areas.

Berry explained that the river reaches "flood level at 6.5 metres above sea level and the Saint John River is currently at 8.2 metres above sea level and stable."

On the Fredericton website, the city indicated that "it will not be business as usual for commuters this week," and the city is "down over 800 parking spaces." on the upside the city is providing free public transportation "for all riders".

There are currently 38 road closures in Fredericton and flooding has disrupted several municipal services like garbage collection. The city is not out of the woods yet as water is expected to remain high for the remainder of the week.


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