GRCA issues caution around waterways

The Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA)  issued a caution, Friday, Dec., 30th  around local waterways with mild temperatures and rainfall causing potential slippery bank conditions.

The  Watershed Conditions – Water Safety statement said mild temperatures and moderate rainfall hover over the Grand River watershed as part of the current weather system occupying southern regions of the province, a drastic change from just one week ago today.

Grand River watershed communities are urged to exercise extreme caution around all local waterways. GRCA warns of banks near rivers and creeks being extremely slippery, and with cold, fast-moving water in close proximity such conditions present a serious hazard. Parents are encouraged to keep their children and pets away from all waterways. The warning is set to remain in effect until Friday January 6, 2023. GRCA is monitoring the situation closely and will continue to provide updates as needed.

Over the next five days, moderate rainfall of up to 40mm is forecasted for much of the watershed region.

Warmer temperatures are triggering a gradual melting of the snow pack which will propel runoff into local waterways.

Ground conditions remain wet and/or frozen. Although major flooding is not expected, rising flows in local waterways will heighten the risk of flooding in low-lying areas usually more prone to flooding. River flows are expected to remain elevated for many days. This will pose a heightened safety risk around rivers and streams across the Grand River watershed.

Much of the local waterways across the Grand River watershed are currently covered in ice that is unseasonably thinner and more brittle than what is considered normal for this time of year. However, it is also important to note that the potential for ice jams is still present in the river system.

Upstream reservoirs are extremely low because of dry weather conditions over the past year. The space in these reservoirs will be utilized to help control runoff from the current weather effects, if needed.

Safety information for parents and children can be found in the GRCA’s River Safety Rules booklet.


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