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Heavy rain Saturday morning in weather forecast may cause localized flooding

Grey Sauble conservation

FROM A JANUARY 10 GREY SAUBLE MEDIA RELEASE —  Recent warm temperatures have significantly lowered the snow pack throughout our watersheds. In most areas, the field snow has been completely exhausted with snow restricted to woodlots and fence rows. The melt has saturated the soils but has not caused any significant runoff to our streams and rivers. River flows are normal for this time of year.

However, there is a significant rain forecast for our region. An intense low-pressure system is developing over Oklahoma this morning and will begin to move towards Southern Ontario later today. Peak rain events will occur early Saturday morning and will turn to freezing rain and snow pellets later Saturday afternoon as temperatures begin to drop.

With the soils already saturated, the rain will readily run off to area waterways. Depending on the intensity and duration of the rain, flows in local waterways will rise and may cause flooding in low lying areas that seasonally flood. Small watercourses and drainage features are typically overwhelmed under these conditions and may cause localized flooding. It is recommended that area residents and municipal road crews ensure that culverts are clear of debris to prevent drainage issues. At this point, the larger streams and river systems will rise but should not exceed average spring runoff conditions.

A close watch on local forecasts and conditions is recommended. The Grey Sauble Conservation Authority website provides links to rain gauges and stream flow data. Due to the elevated flows, residents are advised to use caution near all watercourses. Grey Sauble Staff will continue to monitor conditions as they develop, and will provide updates as required.

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