Flooding across the Prairies has been an ongoing battle for the past several months. And while no major flooding has been reported in Slave Lake, Alberta yet, recent heavy rain has put rebuilding efforts on hold.
Last month, a massive wildfire destroyed a large portion of the town. A mandatory evacuation was put in place and 7,000 residents left their homes not knowing when or if they'd be able to return.
“It was nerve-wracking because we weren't quite sure what an evacuation notice was,” says Kim Wilde, an evacuee from Slave Lake. “We heard sirens in the southeast quadrant of the town, but we weren't quite sure if that meant to evacuate. But common sense dictated, when you saw that much smoke coming at you, the wise thing was to get out of there.”
Residents eventually learned about the status of their homes when the town released a detailed photographic map. 374 lots were destroyed and another 52 were damaged.
Slave Lake residents are eager to rebuild the community, but recent rain has put off the recovery process.
Mayor Karina Pillay-Kinnee says things like bringing in interim housing and demolitions are a challenge while it's raining.
Thunderstorms continued to rumble through the region on Tuesday, but high pressure building in should keep things dry and warm for the remainder of the week, says Gina Ressler, a meteorologist at The Weather Network.
Pillay-Kinnee says water levels are already dropping after heavy rain soaked the region over the weekend.
The Canadian Red Cross has been managing shelters for evacuees and have been providing essential things like food, clothing and hygiene kits.