Manitoba towns mop up after heavy rainfall
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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 20/07/2022 (250 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Parts of Manitoba were slammed with more than 100 millimetres of rain Tuesday.
Teulon Mayor Anna Pzadzierski is watching residents deal with flooding in a area already soaked by spring rainfall.
“I’ve lived here for 54 years. I’ve never seen water like we’ve had this year,” she said.
Ditches in the town were filled to the brim and basements flooded. Pzadzierski said her property has also been damaged.
“It started raining at 4 a.m. and didn’t stop,” Pzadzierski said. “The ground here was saturated from the spring flooding, so really no place for it to go.”
“It’s something we’ve never had.”
Environment Canada reported Teulon was hit with 58.2 mm of rain over the 24-hour period on July 19. During the July 18 period, Teulon was hit with 117 mm of rain, said meteorologist Danielle Desjardins of Environment Canada.
The town of Libau was hit the hardest in the province; it received 140 mm of rain Tuesday.
“(With) that amount of precipitation in that short period of time, the ground is going have trouble absorbing it and you’re going to get some flooding,” Desjardins said.
On Twitter, Ralph Eichler, Manitoba’s economic development minister, said his shop and basement in Teulon had been flooded.
Winnipeg has also reached record-breaking levels of rain, said Scott Kehler, president and chief scientist at Weatherlogics.
“So far this year, Winnipeg is at 528 millimetres of precipitation, which is actually more than we would normally get in an entire year,” Kehler said. “Up to (Tuesday), this is the most precipitation we’ve ever experienced.”
Numerous factors have contributed to this year’s unusually heavy rainfall. Colorado lows that moved across the Prairies this spring made April and May very wet months in Manitoba. The first half of the summer brought abundant thunderstorms.
“Those two months alone almost had 300 millimetres of precipitation, which is three to four times as normal,” Kehler said. “We’re now at the point where we’re at this very large total.”
The heavy rainfalls are creating mixed feelings for farmers, said Morgan Cott, an agronomy extension specialist at the Manitoba Crop Alliance. Smaller crops are more likely to be affected, Cott said.
“It impacted seeding and planting, obviously, negatively,” Cott said. “It gave what was in the ground a rocky start because younger crops don’t like to be sitting in water.”
Kehler said farmers he has worked with have said the rain has made it hard to get seeds in the ground and spray for pests.
Crops such as corn and sunflowers drink a lot of water quite quickly, Cott said.
During last year’s drought, farmers lost a lot of their yield, she added. With the heat the province has had as of late, the rain could help prevent drought.
“The crops that I’m working with are doing well right now… there are more good fields than bad fields, I would say,” Cott said. “They’ll probably be OK as long as we don’t get more torrential downpours.”
Pazdzierski said the Town of Teulon is dealing with flooding, including draining the streets that were flooded. The town’s dump, which is usually closed during the week, has opened to allow residents to dispose of damaged items.