On Tuesday, November 26, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority issued a Flood Watch for the Lake Erie shoreline. The weather event forecasted for tomorrow is expected to be similar in magnitude to the wind storm that occurred on Halloween night.
A low pressure system passing over Southern Ontario tomorrow is forecasted to bring strong sustained southwest winds of 50 to 60km/hour with gusts of up to 90 to 100km/hour. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is currently predicting Lake Erie water levels to increase by approximately 1.5m (5 ft). Significant wave heights in excess of 2.0m (6.5ft) are also forecasted to occur all along the shoreline from Haldimand County to Fort Erie. Water levels will start to build early afternoon Wednesday and will peak early evening.
If the predicted water levels are reached, flooding of low-lying areas is expected. Shoreline damage is also anticipated with the significant wave heights forecasted. “Property owners along the Lake Erie shoreline should take precautionary measures now and prepare their property as best as possible for another extreme weather event,” said Jason Gallagher, Haldimand County’s Manager of Emergency Services and Fire Chief.
Residents living along Lake Erie should pay close attention to water levels and waves in their area and are urged to stay away from the shoreline during this event. Residents are also encouraged to contact their insurance company regarding flood insurance if they do not already have it.
This Flood Watch comes just days before a Flooding Hazards & Preparedness Measures Public Education Centre scheduled for Monday, December 2, 2019 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Dunnville Community Lifespan Centre (275 Ramsey Drive, Dunnville). Staff from the County and Grand River, Long Point Region and Niagara Peninsula conservation authorities will be present to share information and answer questions.
“We’ve already seen the damaging power of Lake Erie and the impacts it can have on our waterways and shorelines. With lake levels as high as they are, we really need property owners to understand the severity of these hazards and know exactly what to do and how to stay informed before, during and after a flood event,” Gallagher added.
The Flood Watch will remain in effect until noon on Thursday, November 28, 2019. Updated flood messages will be issued as conditions develop and better forecast information becomes available. Residents are encouraged to monitor the Haldimand County website and social media accounts for the most up-to-date flood and weather warning information.