Water, water everywhere…

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This past winter-spring season has been one for the ages in terms of most moisture recorded in 100-plus years, and the City of Winnipeg has some tips for you to help.

Eventually, summer temperatures will come (eventually) and there will likely be a significant population of mosquitoes that will arrive along with it. Mosquitoes lay eggs in water-filled containers such as wheelbarrows, buckets, eavestroughs, rain barrels, and birdbaths and standing water is the ideal environment for the development of Winnipeg’s mosquito larvae. A single birdbath filled with standing water can generate as many as 1,000 adult nuisance mosquitoes.

This is where you come in, as the city is seeking your help to combat the invasion of these bloodsuckers by asking that homeowners commit to removing standing water on their private property.

Installing a sump pump (as above) or a backwater valve in your home can help protect your basement from flooding.

Did you know that 50 per cent of Winnipeg’s mosquito population comes from standing water on private property, so everyone needs to do their part. By draining, dumping and covering standing water in spring and after a rainfall, all Winnipeggers will benefit by reducing the overall adult mosquito population.

This year the term “overland flooding” has been used many times and many neighbours are learning the ins and outs of insurance coverages. Winnipeg is considerably at risk of overland flooding due to our relative flat topography, coupled with unpredictable events such as excess snowmelt, heavy rainfall and water main breaks.

Homes that are not protected by a backwater valve or sump pit drainage system are at greater risk of basement flooding. If you can’t tell whether or not your home has a backwater valve or sump pit drainage system, a licensed plumber may be able to help you.

The year your home was built can also help you determine whether or not you have a backwater valve or sump pit drainage system:

• If your home was built after 1979, it was required by law to have a backwater valve installed;

• Homes built since 1990 are required to have a sump pit drainage system installed;

• Some older homes may have had backwater valves and sump pit drainage systems installed after construction.

Here are some steps to reduce the risk of basement and overland flooding:

• Arrange for a licensed plumber to install a backwater valve or a sump pit drainage system;

• Check and maintain your backwater valve and sump pit drainage system regularly,

• Don’t drain water from your sump pump into your floor drain,

• Keep the end of the hose well away from your property line so that water does not flow onto the street, lane, boulevard, sidewalk, or your neighbour’s property;

• Improve drainage around your house;

• Don’t throw garbage, grease or hazardous waste down your drains;

• Don’t put grass clipping, leaves, or other debris on the streets,

• Prop appliances such as washers, dryers, and freezers off the floor by putting blocks of wood under them so they don’t get damaged by water;

• Don’t store belongings in cardboard boxes on the floor in the basement. Store them on a shelf or in plastic totesÚ

As always, I’m proud to represent Transcona at City Hall, and I hope you find my articles informative.

Should you want to discuss this or other items of concern—please contact my office via telephone at 204-9868087 or email me at snason@winnipeg.ca

Shawn Nason

Shawn Nason
Transcona ward report

Shawn Nason is the city councillor for Transcona ward.

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