KCCA updates the Shoreline Conditions Statement—Flood Outlook for the Lake Erie Shoreline
For immediate release
This notice is intended to update the public and local municipalities on the status of the Lake Erie shoreline within the Kettle Creek Conservation Authority.
As expected, Lake Erie water levels have continued to slowly decline over the month of August. Data collected in Port Stanley indicate that the current water level is 66cm higher than average and 4cm lower than the record high recorded at this time last year. This measurement does not account for any increase in water level due to storm surge or wind driven waves. Currently, the static (calm) water level in Lake Erie is fluctuating with rain events.
“As we move into the fall storm season, we have to be extra observant of those sustained and gusty southwesterly winds,” says Jennifer Dow, KCCA’s water conservation supervisor. The greatest risk for flooding and erosion due to storm surge in the Kettle Creek watershed is in Port Stanley when storms bring sustained winds from the south, in particular from the southwest, at wind speeds of 50km/hr or higher. “Late summer storm events, especially in the Great Lakes region can move in quickly bringing gusty winds and heavy downpours,” says Dow. “Under the right conditions, storm surge can happen quickly with little warning.” Areas of concern are the low lying beach communities and shoreline areas along Lake Erie, including the low lying areas along the downstream reaches of Kettle Creek within Port Stanley.
Residents should take extra caution to avoid areas where flooding is occurring as well as creeks, streams and shoreline areas during significant rainfall and wind events. The combination of slippery banks, waves, waves overtopping shoreline structures, and fast moving water can be dangerous. Standing water can also present its own unseen hazards. Children and pets should be kept away from flowing or standing water as well as shoreline areas.
KCCA staff will continue to monitor Lake Erie conditions and provide updates as warranted. Unless superseded by a Flood Watch, this Shoreline Conditions Statement—Flood Outlook will remain in effect until September 30, 2020 at which time conditions will be reevaluated. For further updates, log on to www.kettlecreekconservation.on.ca or connect with Kettle Creek Conservation Authority socially on Facebook and Twitter @KettleCreekCA.
Public Relations Supervisor
The Kettle Creek Conservation Authority issues three levels of messages:
Watershed Conditions Statement (Previously High Water Safety Bulletin): a general notice of weather conditions that could pose a risk to personal safety or which have the potential to lead to flooding.
There are two variations of these:
Watershed Conditions Statement – Water Safety: High flows, unsafe banks, melting ice or other factors could be dangerous for recreational users such as anglers, canoeists, hikers, children, pets, etc. Flooding is not expected
Watershed Conditions Statement – Flood Outlook: Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.
Flood Watch (Previously Flood Advisory): Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.
Flood Warning (No change): Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities and individuals should take action to deal with flood conditions. This may include road closures and evacuations.