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Risk of flooding in U.S. Red River Valley remains low

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The potential for substantial flooding in the U.S. portion of the Red River Valley remains low.

A supplememental flood outlook issued this morning by the U.S. National Weather Service continues to predict only moderate flooding on the main stem of the Red River south of the Canada-U.S. border, after the spring thaw finally arrives.

The thaw is expected to be late because of colder-than-usual temperatures -- but not as late as in 2013, when snowy weather persisted into late April.

As in previous statements, the U.S. National Weather Service cited a relatively dry snowpack, average soil-moisture conditions and average river and stream flows as factors in its assessment, along with the late melt.

Manitoba flood forecasters have made similar predictions for most sections of the Red and Assiniboine River basins. Heavy snow or rain between now and mid-April could change the situation, but the precipitation would have to be extreme to significantly alter the potential for a major flood.

In the U.S., forecasters have pegged the probability of a Red River flood approaching the scale of the 2009 or 2011 events at less than five per cent, at this point.

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