July 4, 2015


Severe thunderstorm watch in effect Special air quality statement in effect

Flood Fight

Floodway activated; Selinger visits flooded areas in Westman

Captain Jerry Larkin, one of the soldiers from CFB Shilo, makes sandbags alongside workers from the Municipality of Portage la Prairie on Saturday.
A CN Rail train crosses over the Portage Diversion near where construction workers strengthen the east side on Saturday, July 5.
The Office of the Fire Commissioner's mobile command unit is set up in Portage la Prairie on Saturday.
Soldiers from the Canadian Forces base at Shilo, who along with members of the Portage la Prairie Municipality, were filling sandbags at the Portage Yard on Saturday.
Construction workers bolster the east side of the Portage Diversion on Saturday.
A vehicle from the construction crew that is working to bulk up the east side of the Portage Diversion drives by near Highway 1.
Construction crews work to bulk up the east side of the Portage Diversion near Highway 1. They are removing dirt from along the road and dumping it on the bank.
Ron Owens, a resident near where the cut would be made at the Hoop and Holler Bend, surveys the scene on Saturday.
Soldiers from CFB Shilo and workers from the Municipality of Portage la Prairie work to make sandbags at the Portage Yard on Saturday.
A flooded farm in western Manitoba is seen from the air Monday.
Damage to Veterans Way is seen after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flooding across southwestern Manitoba. Over 100 mm of rain fell in the area, with 127 mm recorded at Brandon Airport.
Workers put up sandbags in Melita Monday afternoon after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flood damage across southwestern Manitoba.
Oil and water mix as floodwaters overrun fields near Cromer, Manitoba on Monday afternoon.
The town of Reston is seen Monday afternoon after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flood damage across southwestern Manitoba.
 Crews work on floodwaters besieging Reston on Monday afternoon after a weekend of relentless rain and wind hammered southwestern Manitoba.
Water rises on either side of a road in western Manitoba.
Storm clouds roil in the skies over Deloraine, Monday afternoon.
The swollen Gopher Creek in the town of Virden flows over a bridge on Monday.
Sandbags surround a portion of a home inundated with water on King Street in the town of Virden as the Gopher Creek continued to rise on Monday.
A dike is built along King Street in Virden on Monday to protect a lift station from the rising Gopher Creek.
Apartments in Virden sit surrounded by water on Monday after the rising Gopher Creek inundated the building.
Apartments in Virden sit surrounded by water on Monday after the rising Gopher Creek inundated the homes over the weekend, forcing the evacuation of residents.
Diesel walks through flood water from the swollen Gopher Cr(Tim Smith/Brandon Sun)
Lindsay Robinson, her dog Diesel and Tamara Miller walk through flood waters on Bridge Street in Virden as the Gopher Creek continues to rise on Monday afternoon.
John Higginbotham watches as a dike is built to protect a lift station along King Street in Virden as the Gopher Creek continues to rise on Monday afternoon.
Volunteers make sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon.
Volunteers Kyla Martens and Brooke Williams make sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon.
Treats sit out for the volunteers making sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon.
Bill Hayward, his wife Brenda and daughter Carly watch the water from the swollen Gopher Creek slowly rise in front of their home on King Street in Virden on Monday afternoon.
Flood waters surround a T33 fighter jet on display along Highway 10 and Sandison Road near the Brandon Municipal Airport on Sunday after rain fell almost non-stop throughout the weekend. The airport was closed due to the flooding.
Volunteers help build a sandbag dike around homes in the town of Reston in southwestern Manitoba on Sunday after heavy rainfall flooded the community
Volunteers build a sandbag dike around homes in the town of Reston, Man.
The Pipestone Creek swells over its banks west of Kola, Man. as rain falls on Sunday morning.
Mr. Froese and Ivan Penner carry a couch from the flooded home of Greg and Amy Baerg to a waiting trailer in Cromer.
Water pours over Highway 256 and floods homes in the village of Cromer.
Water overruns Highway 256 in Cromer.
A young boy plays in the flood water adjacent to Highway 256 in the village of Cromer.
A truck makes its way through flood waters covering Highway 256 in the village of Cromer.
A tree blown over by strong winds damaged a parked car in Winnipeg, Sunday morning, June 29, 2014.
A tree blown over by strong winds crashes through the roof of a parked car in Winnipeg, Sunday morning, June 29, 2014.
Vehicles splash through a deep puddle at Notre Dame Avenue and Border Street, Sunday, June 29, 2014.
A large tree branch lays across Aberdeen Avenue after hitting a van between Salter and Charles after strong winds overnight, Sunday, June 29, 2014.
A large tree broken at the trunk lays across Pritchard Avenue between Charles and Aikens after strong winds overnight, Sunday, June 29, 2014.
Brandon Sun 30062014 Sandbags surround a portion of a home inundated with water in the town of Virden as the Gopher Creek continued to rise on Monday. Tim Smith/Brandon Sun)
Captain Jerry Larkin, one of the soldiers from CFB Shilo, makes sandbags alongside workers from the Municipality of Portage la Prairie on Saturday. - Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press
A CN Rail train crosses over the Portage Diversion near where construction workers strengthen the east side on Saturday, July 5. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
The Office of the Fire Commissioner's mobile command unit is set up in Portage la Prairie on Saturday. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Soldiers from the Canadian Forces base at Shilo, who along with members of the Portage la Prairie Municipality, were filling sandbags at the Portage Yard on Saturday. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Construction workers bolster the east side of the Portage Diversion on Saturday. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
A vehicle from the construction crew that is working to bulk up the east side of the Portage Diversion drives by near Highway 1. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Construction crews work to bulk up the east side of the Portage Diversion near Highway 1. They are removing dirt from along the road and dumping it on the bank. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Ron Owens, a resident near where the cut would be made at the Hoop and Holler Bend, surveys the scene on Saturday. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Soldiers from CFB Shilo and workers from the Municipality of Portage la Prairie work to make sandbags at the Portage Yard on Saturday. - TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
A flooded farm in western Manitoba is seen from the air Monday. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Damage to Veterans Way is seen after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flooding across southwestern Manitoba. Over 100 mm of rain fell in the area, with 127 mm recorded at Brandon Airport. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Workers put up sandbags in Melita Monday afternoon after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flood damage across southwestern Manitoba. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Oil and water mix as floodwaters overrun fields near Cromer, Manitoba on Monday afternoon. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
The town of Reston is seen Monday afternoon after heavy weekend rainfall left a swath of flood damage across southwestern Manitoba. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Crews work on floodwaters besieging Reston on Monday afternoon after a weekend of relentless rain and wind hammered southwestern Manitoba. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Water rises on either side of a road in western Manitoba. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
Storm clouds roil in the skies over Deloraine, Monday afternoon. - Colin Corneau / Brandon Sun
The swollen Gopher Creek in the town of Virden flows over a bridge on Monday. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Sandbags surround a portion of a home inundated with water on King Street in the town of Virden as the Gopher Creek continued to rise on Monday. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
A dike is built along King Street in Virden on Monday to protect a lift station from the rising Gopher Creek. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Apartments in Virden sit surrounded by water on Monday after the rising Gopher Creek inundated the building. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Apartments in Virden sit surrounded by water on Monday after the rising Gopher Creek inundated the homes over the weekend, forcing the evacuation of residents. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Diesel walks through flood water from the swollen Gopher Cr(Tim Smith/Brandon Sun) - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Lindsay Robinson, her dog Diesel and Tamara Miller walk through flood waters on Bridge Street in Virden as the Gopher Creek continues to rise on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
John Higginbotham watches as a dike is built to protect a lift station along King Street in Virden as the Gopher Creek continues to rise on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Volunteers make sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Volunteers Kyla Martens and Brooke Williams make sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Treats sit out for the volunteers making sandbags at the public works building in Virden during flood fighting efforts on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Bill Hayward, his wife Brenda and daughter Carly watch the water from the swollen Gopher Creek slowly rise in front of their home on King Street in Virden on Monday afternoon. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Flood waters surround a T33 fighter jet on display along Highway 10 and Sandison Road near the Brandon Municipal Airport on Sunday after rain fell almost non-stop throughout the weekend. The airport was closed due to the flooding. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Volunteers help build a sandbag dike around homes in the town of Reston in southwestern Manitoba on Sunday after heavy rainfall flooded the community - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Volunteers build a sandbag dike around homes in the town of Reston, Man. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
The Pipestone Creek swells over its banks west of Kola, Man. as rain falls on Sunday morning. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Mr. Froese and Ivan Penner carry a couch from the flooded home of Greg and Amy Baerg to a waiting trailer in Cromer. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Water pours over Highway 256 and floods homes in the village of Cromer. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Water overruns Highway 256 in Cromer. - Tim Smith/Brandon Sun
A young boy plays in the flood water adjacent to Highway 256 in the village of Cromer. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
A truck makes its way through flood waters covering Highway 256 in the village of Cromer. - Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
A tree blown over by strong winds damaged a parked car in Winnipeg, Sunday morning, June 29, 2014. - John Woods / The Canadian Press
A tree blown over by strong winds crashes through the roof of a parked car in Winnipeg, Sunday morning, June 29, 2014. - John Woods / The Canadian Press
Vehicles splash through a deep puddle at Notre Dame Avenue and Border Street, Sunday, June 29, 2014. - Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press
A large tree branch lays across Aberdeen Avenue after hitting a van between Salter and Charles after strong winds overnight, Sunday, June 29, 2014. - Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press
A large tree broken at the trunk lays across Pritchard Avenue between Charles and Aikens after strong winds overnight, Sunday, June 29, 2014. - Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press
Brandon Sun 30062014 Sandbags surround a portion of a home inundated with water in the town of Virden as the Gopher Creek continued to rise on Monday. Tim Smith/Brandon Sun) - Tim Smith/Brandon Sun

Premier Greg Selinger toured flooded areas near Brandon this morning, promising that a Manitoba Conservation helicopter will be moved to the city to help with medical responses in western Manitoba.

The helicopter will be moved to the Brandon Municipal Airport today.

A flooded farm in western Manitoba is seen from the air Monday.

COLIN CORNEAU / BRANDON SUN

A flooded farm in western Manitoba is seen from the air Monday.

Over the last 48 hours, towns and RMs expressed safety concerns caused by the overland flooding and road closures throughout south western Manitoba.

"We are working with the department of conservation to move a helicopter to Brandon today," Selinger said, before leaving to tour Deloraine and Melita.

"We are concerned about the amount of water that still has to come from Saskatchewan," Selinger said. "An updated forecast of how much is expected later today, and that will hopefully give us and communities an idea of what needs to be done."

The Red River floodway was activated at 9 a.m. today to protect basements and homes in Winnipeg from an expected rise in river levels. Boaters cannot access the area around the floodway inlet and the control structure.

The Red is expected to rise to about 17.4 to 17.7 feet James over the next week and stay about 14 feet until mid-July. Normal summer average levels for the Red are usually 6.5 feet James; the walkway along the Assiniboine River is at 8.5 feet James.

Winnipeg police warned Tuesday that both the Red and Assiniboine rivers are extremely high, fast moving and filled with debris, and advised against boating on the waterways.  All city of Winnipeg boat launches are closed and barricaded.

200 evacuated from homes

More than 200 people have been evacuated as flooding continues to wreak havoc in large parts of Manitoba, according to Steve Ashton, Manitoba's minister of infrastructure and transportation.

"We're seeing record flows on many of the tributaries across the province. We're seeing some very significant flows, much greater than normal," Ashton said in a press conference.

The province is focused on dealing with immediate flooding issues around the province as quickly as possible. Until communities are out of harms way, it will not have an estimate of how much the damage will cost, Selinger said.

"It will depend on what happens over the next few days, but we expect claims to be made for disaster financial assistance," the premier said.

Manitoba Emergency Measures Organization encourages residents to take appropriate action and keep track of expenses and losses. Recording damages with pictures and spending costs will help to make claims for disaster financial assistance later.

Flood warnings have been issued for:

  • the Assiniboine River, from the Shellmouth Dam to Brandon,
  • all points along the Winnipeg River system including Nutimik Lake,
  • Lake St. Martin,
  • Dauphin Lake,
  • Qu'Appelle River,
  • Vermillion River and Valley River near Dauphin,
  • Medora Creek near Napinka,
  • Gainsborough Creek near Lyleton,
  • Gopher Creek near Virden,
  • Roaring River at Minitonas,
  • McKinnon Creek near McCreary,
  • Scissor Creek near McCauley,
  • Little Souris River near Brandon,
  • Epinette Creek near Carberry,
  • Graham Creek near Melita and
  • the Little Saskatchewan River near Rivers.

Flood watches have also been issued for Lake Manitoba and Lake Winnipeg, with high water advisories for all points along the Red, Souris and Saskatchewan rivers.

Emergency procedures are being enacted, Ashton said. opened. Construction will also begin on the Lake St. Martin emergency outlet channel on July 2, and will start taking water soon after, Ashton said.

Because of road closures, the province is also asking travelers to call 511 to check on road conditions before travelling.

-- with files from the Brandon Sun

History

Updated on Tuesday, July 1, 2014 at 12:28 PM CDT: Updates with comments from Premier Selinger.

1:48 PM: Removes repetition.

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