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Officials preparing for potential spring flooding in southern Saskatchewan

March 12, 2013 — People in southern Saskatchewan may need to keep their rubber boots handy this spring.

The risk of flooding will depend on how fast the snow melts this spring
The risk of flooding will depend on how fast the snow melts this spring

With spring right around the corner, some Saskatchewan residents have become concerned with the large amount of snow that has accumulated on streets and private properties.

Rob Frank, manager of strategic services with the City of Saskatoon, says the city is ready to deal with the melt.

That's good news, considering that The Water Security Agency is calling for above normal, or well above normal, spring runoff in almost all of southern Saskatchewan this year.

In areas around Regina and Moose Jaw and just north of Saskatoon, the runoff is expected to be very high. There were relatively dry conditions going into winter, but agency minister Ken Cheveldayoff says the snowpack is above normal.

The runoff and the risk of flooding will depend on how fast the snow melts and how the ground absorbs the excess water.

Officials say that sandbags will be ready if they are needed.

Frank says that crews will be out ensuring that storm drains are clear, but there are some steps residents can take to reduce the risk of flooding.

He recommends:

  • Clearing the natural drainage path so that water can run into a back alley or out onto the street;
  • Making sure that eavestroughs and downspouts are functioning properly, and that the downspouts are at least 2 metres from private properties; and 
  • Inspecting local catch basins to make sure they are working.

If you see a problem with flooding, be sure to contact your local public works office.

With files from the Canadian Press

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