• The Strong Wind Warning for Lake Erie continues and is expected to last throughout the day tomorrow as well.
• Risk of shoreline damage, erosion and flooding along the Lake Erie shore, including the high bluff areas.
• Along Erie Shore Drive, there is the possibility of flooding and shoreline damage, in particular overnight or tomorrow morning
The Strong Wind Warning issued by Environment Canada for Lake Erie continues and is expected to last throughout the day tomorrow as well. Winds are currently out of the east with speeds between 25 and 30 km/hr. Forecasts suggest that these winds should be switching to the southeast this evening, to the south overnight and to the southwest tomorrow morning. Winds would then be expected to drop tomorrow evening. However, there is quite a bit of uncertainty in the various forecasts as to how high the wind speeds will get and when. Some forecasts are suggesting that winds will not rise substantially higher than they are now. Other forecasts suggest winds will begin climbing and could reach speeds of 35 km/hr from the south overnight. Some forecasts are suggesting even stronger winds tomorrow morning or early afternoon with wind speeds approaching or exceeding 40 km/hr from the southwest with wind gust of 60 km/hr. Environment Canada’s Marine Forecast suggest that if these wind speeds are reached, there could be 2 to 3 m waves on Lake Erie.
For any of these wind scenarios, the strong winds will be driving waves onto the Lake Erie shoreline in Chatham-Kent and Elgin County right through into tomorrow afternoon. There is a risk that wave action could damage shoreline protection works and cause erosion, all along the Lake Erie shoreline, including along the high bluff areas. Low lying areas could also experience flooding. While winds are out of the east, the area most likely to be impacted is the Rose Beach Line area. As winds switch to the south, the Erie Shore Drive would become exposed to greater wave action. The winds that caused severe flooding and shoreline damage, and triggered a State of Emergency for Erie Shore Drive, on August 27th, had peaked at speeds of around 35 km/hr from the south. Some of the forecasts suggest those thresholds could be met or exceeded during this event. Residents 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 October 5, 2019.
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