• Forecasts calling for mainly southwest winds between moderate and strong later this afternoon through Tuesday.
• Risk of shoreline damage and erosion all along the Lake Erie shoreline, including the high bluff areas.
• Flooding and shoreline damage possible in low lying Lake Erie shoreline communities such as Erie Shore Drive
• Flooding and shoreline damage possible in Lighthouse Cove Monday evening
• Risk of thunderstorms Monday afternoon and evening
The region is currently seeing light to moderate winds from the southwest. Winds are predicted to pick up this afternoon and could exceed 25 km/hr late this afternoon or early this evening. Forecasts suggest the southwest winds will then stay in the 20 to 35 km/hr range through Monday afternoon. Forecasts suggest winds will drop and switch to the west or northwest Monday evening through Tuesday morning. Tuesday afternoon winds are predicted to switch back to the southwest and could rise back up into the 20 to 30 km/hr range for the afternoon and evening. Forecasts are predicting waves around 0.5 m on Lake St. Clair and 1.0 m on Lake Erie. There is also a risk of thunderstorms Monday afternoon and evening.
While winds are out of the southwest, they will be driving waves onto our Lake Erie shoreline throughout Chatham-Kent and Elgin County. There is a risk that wave action could damage shoreline protection works and cause erosion all along the shoreline, including along the high bluff areas. The range of wind speeds in the forecasts suggests that winds could climb above the 25 km/hr threshold that have previously caused flooding along Erie Shore Drive in Chatham-Kent. Other low-lying areas along the Lake Erie shoreline could also be at risk of flooding from higher wind speeds. The most likely periods when we could see impacts along Lake Erie would be this evening through Monday afternoon and Tuesday afternoon and evening.
While winds speeds are predicted to drop when they switch directions to the west Monday evening, some forecast suggest winds could still be strong enough when they switch to cause problems in the eastern end of Lake St. Clair. The community of Lighthouse Cove could see some increased water levels due to lake setup and waves in the 0.25 m range. This is also a time when thunderstorms could be passing through the region.
In addition to flooding associated with lake setup and waves from strong sustained winds, there is a risk of flooding due to thundershowers and associated weather systems that can cause sudden or unexpected changes in wind and wave conditions and heavy rains. Due to the high lake levels, water is not draining away properly from these shoreline areas, which can lead to greater impacts from thundershowers and prolong flooding.
Residents and workers in shoreline areas should pay attention to local conditions and be prepared. People should take extra caution and avoid the shoreline should conditions get rough. The waves can be strong and the shoreline slippery. There could also be hazardous debris within the waves and water which could be thrown onto the shore. Standing water can also present unseen hazards. Children and animals should be kept away from the water.
Officials will continue to monitor the situation and update this advisory if necessary.
This message will be in effect until July 29, 2020
Message Contact: Jason Wintermute (firstname.lastname@example.org)