Cottage country prepares for spring flooding

Published: March 4, 2020

Illustration of a Flooding Zone Sign with Rising Water During storm Photo by Lorelyn Medina/Shutterstock

As the first official day of spring creeps closer, so does the threat of spring flooding. In an effort to mitigate potential flooding damage this year, Kawartha Conservation will be holding a free public forum on flooding preparedness on Saturday March 7th in Fenelon Falls.

After record level spring flooding in 2019, high water levels will likely be at the forefront of many cottagers’ brains this spring. In fact, high water has started early in 2020, with some warnings popping up already this winter. The forum will address who is responsible for what in regards to flood emergency management and will include presentations about how to flood proof, as well as how to protect a building from flood waters, if necessary.

Flood preparation continues in other areas across Ontario. Several water bodies are already under flood watch, and this spring is expected to be wetter than average around the Great Lakes according to a report by The Weather Network. The report also states that the Great Lakes are a flood risk, a statement backed by the recent news that the IJC is supporting a decision to set maximum Lake Ontario outflows until March 31st. If, at the end of this period, water levels and inflows indicate further action is necessary and the St. Lawrence can support the volume, the IJC has directed that outflows should be maximized through to April 15.

Cottagers in particular should be proactive when it comes to flooding—recent budget cuts in the province could have an impact on flood planning and response. If a flood occurs, cottage owners won’t eligible to claim federal or provincial flood relief dollars for damage to a property that isn’t their principal residence. And it’s no secret that insurance policies for waterfront properties are often cost prohibitive and hard to find.

Those interested in attending the forum in Fenelon Falls are asked to register in advance, and for more information on what you can do to protect your home or cottage, click here.

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