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
Jets aim to simplify and get back to winning
Oswald says it may be time for province to step in for First Nations
Genuine MS clinical trial approved for Manitobans
Key of Bart: YWG
Ottawa reports $3.3B deficit so far in '14-15
Realtors, chiefs want province to help save aboriginal home ownership scheme
Long-serving police dog, Judge, dies
Police looking for suspicious man in white van
SCOC won't hear case of lottery jackpot loss
CIBC lays off staff as borrowing wanes
Playwright's domestic outlook is outdated, but his dialogue still sparkles
El Tassi family name to be honoured with new park dedication
Cirque du soleil bringing Varekai to town this summer
Mackintosh's son pleads not guilty in robbery, cites mental illness
Ashton vows action to end sexual violence against women
CentreVenture link questioned
Power 97 FM playing different tunes today
'Virtual waiting rooms' one solution to ambulance wait times: fire chief
Oswald proposes three-year pilot program for new immigrants
CIBC cuts 500 jobs: published report
Province no longer requires proof of surgery for changing sex designation
Coach clipping wrestler's long hair leads to investigation
Snowy Friday a precursor to frigid weekend
Pakistani player overcomes adversity
Watson deal gives Blue flexibility
Cougar cub named Teeka after public vote
Film's dirty business should be more entertaining
Something to crow about
Manitoba reserves the worst in Canada
Handing out messages on bottles of water
Chad air force bombs Boko Haram out of Nigerian border town
Supreme Court affirms right to strike
Gwyneth Paltrow steams her vagina
Russia cuts key rate to help economy, leaving ruble to drop
New Music Festival continues to broaden horizons, challenge audiences
City investigating false results
South Africa grants parole to apartheid death squad leader
Markets brace for Big Oil profit plunge