Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 04/30/2013 4:49 PM | Comments: 0
A protest that delayed the opening of the Portage Diversion by 12 hours on Monday could have had dire consequences for four municipalities downstream, provincial officials said Tuesday.
While the government sought a court injunction to remove protesters -- which for a time included an opposition MLA -- greater water flows than expected were heading east along the Assiniboine River, officials said this afternoon.
The government sought to open the diversion to prevent flooding due to ice jams at 11 a.m. The gates did not open until 11 that evening.
The protest — and the involvement of Portage la Prairie Conservative MLA Ian Wishart — dominated debate in the legislature this afternoon, with Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Steve Ashton terming it unacceptable and irresponsible.
Ashton repeated those statements in a later news conference, flanked by the deputy ministers of Infrastructure and Transportation and EMO.
"What happened yesterday was irresponsible, was not acceptable. It created a real risk. It put other Manitobans at risk," Ashton told reporters.
The municipalities that could have been impacted by ice-jam induced flooding, had the Portage Diversion not been operated, included the RMs of Portage and Cartier, Headingley and St. Francois Xavier, officials said.
"If the opening of the diversion had been delayed further, residents and properties downstream could have been affected by a surge of water than occurred after an ice dam broke upstream of the diversion," the province said in its flood bulletin.
"After the ice dam broke, inflows to the reservoir during the night reached 13,000 cubic feet per second, with 7,000 cfs directed to the diversion," according to the bulletin. "An instantaneous peak with ice resulted in inflows to the reservoir reaching 17,000 cfs with 10,000 cfs directed to the diversion at 8:20 a,m. (today)."
Meanwhile, ice jams against a bridge along the Whitemud River at the town of Gladstone caused some overland flooding yesterday. Levels on the Whitemud are dropping upstream of Gladstone today.
The Seven Regions Health Centre in Gladstone required some minor sandbagging on a road access point, but the facility is not at risk, the province said. Ten area homes experienced minor flooding. There were no evacuations.
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
Havixbeck wants to upgrade sewage plant, cut phosphorous contamination
Bowman promises different city hall, highlights 'efficiencies'
Broken net for city's at-risk kids
Rash of injuries means Jets still evaluating new players
Willy skips Bombers practice to let his body recover
Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs will release its own report on how to fix child welfare
Winnipeg start-ups score sought-after financing at innovation fund awards
Veteran Manitoba RCMP officer alleged to have molested child
AFN wants outside probe into teen's death
Province spent $844 million on infrastructure last year, an increase of $115 million
Man in custody after weapons-related investigation
Tories want government to release consultant's report on Phoenix Sinclair inquiry
Police looking for two bronze plaques stolen from community of Dunnottar
Man gets jail after assaulting, choking police officer
Sanders says voters should be told hard truth about city's financial woes
Clouds, rain on the way
Art gallery sets weekend opening attendance record for its new Dali exhibitions
Van 'driven erratically' crashes into construction equipment
Russia upset over Canadian visa denials
Former NHL player, hall of famer Hergesheimer dies
Judy W-L's ties targeted
CanRock stalwarts The Tea Party in town Dec. 2
Abbas does more harm than good
Tories months late with jihadi tracking tool
Magnotta's trial takes look at photos of parcels
Dialogue through dance
Uh-oh, more goalie worries
Canadians paying more for dairy, poultry
Radio personality charged
Nicole Kidman reveals heartbreak at father's death
History abounds in HBC Archive
Hot in the kitchen business
Health groups call for flavoured tobacco ban
US Ebola labs, health equipment arrive in Liberia
Spotify to battle YouTube as itlaunches in Canada
Dalhousie suspends rugby club over hazing
EU says Apple gets illegal tax benefits in Ireland
Seven rescued from sinking vessel off BC