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Petersfield area under mandatory evacuation

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The Rural Municipality of St. Andrews is evacuating part of the Petersfield area south of Netley Creek to avoid a repeat of the frantic Breezy Point rescue.

About 50 properties – year-round residences, summer cottages and trailers – are under an evacuation order because Netley Creek has spilled over its banks and has submerged roads, St. Andrews emergency co-ordinator Paul Guyader said this evening.

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Netley Creek is overflowing because of an ice jam on the Red River near the mouth of the creek, he said. Normally, that water would spill into Netley Lake – a large bay of Netley Marsh, the massive wetland at the south end of Lake Winnipeg – but ice on the lake has forced the creek to swell upstream instead, Guyader said.

The evacuation order is mandatory because officials want to remove residents safely while daylight remains. Early Sunday morning, nine people had to be evacuated from the Breezy Point area alongside the Red River by zodiac boats.

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