WINNIPEG - The Red River in Winnipeg has finally reached unofficial flood level.
As of 4 p.m., the Red River had risen to 18 feet above normal winter ice levels at the James Avenue monitoring station. While the Red remains well within its banks inside the city, 18 feet James is the arbitrary level city officials consider a flood.
At 20 feet James, some low-lying properties must be protected by sandbag dikes. Flood-protection officials like to build in two feet of "freeboard" to guard against sudden river fluctuations, such as the ones caused by ice jams.
Traditionally, the city begins advising some property owners to begin building sandbag dikes at 18 feet James. The city actually made this recommendation for 110 properties two days ago, when river levels started to rise above 14 feet James.
Another 450 properties, at slightly higher elevations, remain on the city’s flood-protection list this spring.
For more information see www.manitoba.ca/flood.