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Predicted rain could worsen flood concerns

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An unstable weather system will bring 40 to 50 millimetres of rain across much of southern Manitoba by July 1, exacerbating provincial flood concerns.

In a flood update issued Friday, the province said strong winds are forecast to be part of the low-pressure system, raising concerns for cottage owners.

Flood Fight

Flood warnings continue for the Assiniboine River from the Shellmouth Dam to Brandon, at all points along the Winnipeg River system including Nutimik Lake in Whiteshell Provincial Park, and for Lake St. Martin and Dauphin Lake.

A flood watch is in place for Lake Manitoba and Lake Winnipeg.

The province has issued high water advisories for all points along the Red and Saskatchewan rivers. The Red is forecast to rise to 16.7 feet at James Avenue in downtown Winnipeg in the next week.

Earlier this week, the province said it might operate the Red River Floodway to lower the river to protect Winnipeg basements from flooding, depending on rainfall forecasts.

The province advises that some roads leading to cottages in the Nutimik Lake area may be affected by flooding in the coming days. There are already reports of boathouses being flooded, and some sandbagging is underway.

Sandbags are available for cottagers. Call Seven Sisters District Office at (204) 348-4004 for more information.

The province said, if possible, cottagers at Nutimik Lake should consider pumping out septic tanks that may be affected by overland flooding and refilling them with water to prevent them from overflowing or being badly damaged.

Provincial campgrounds are also being affected by flooding. Sites are affected at Birch Point, Watchorn, St. Malo, Rainbow Beach, Camp Morton, Falcon Beach Campground and Falcon Lakeshore Campground.

All campers with reservations for affected sites should have been contacted directly. Up to date information on campgrounds and campsite reservations can be found at https://prspub.gov.mb.ca/.

Meanwhile, states of local emergency continue for three rural municipalities — the RMs of Arthur, Edward and Wallace — in the province’s southwestern corner due to excessive rainfall.

And the province said Lake Winnipeg is forecast to rise to 716.1 feet above sea level by late July. The lake’s regulated range is between 711 and 715 feet.

The government said Manitoba Hydro is operating its control structures at the outlet of Lake Winnipeg to allow for maximum possible outflows from the lake.

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