The Lower Thames watershed has received between 45 and 60 mm of rainfall since Wednesday. The Upper Thames watershed received slightly less. Weather forecasts are only calling for a couple millimeters today and no more until next Thursday or Friday.
Water levels on local watercourses peaked overnight and are dropping. However, many are still running high with some having spilled out into adjacent low lying areas. Indian and McGregor Creeks in Chatham-Kent have exceeded levels typically seen for spring type events over the last few years. The Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority is operating the Indian-McGregor Creek Diversion Channel to protect the south end of the City of Chatham from flooding.
The Thames River itself was already running high from the rainfall on Sunday/Monday and is still on the rise due to the recent rainfall. All along the Thames from Delaware to Chatham, the low lying river flats are flooded. Water levels can still be expected to rise upstream of Chatham as water from the Upper Thames makes its way downstream. Water levels on the Thames are not expected to cause flooding outside the low lying, dominantly agricultural, river flats. In Chatham, the downtown sidewalk along the river and the access road under the 5th Street bridge are under water and should be expected to remain so into the middle of next week. The Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority no longer expects to have to operate the 6th Street Backwater Dam and Pumping Station in downtown Chatham. The Thames River should be expected remain high into the middle of next week.
Lake St. Clair water levels are currently 10-15 cm under their record high levels. Strong winds out of the northwest are predicted throughout the weekend with speeds reaching 30 km/hr gusting to 45 km/hr. Wind speeds have dropped since yesterday but there is still a risk that, in vulnerable areas, wave action could cause flooding, damage shoreline protection works and cause shoreline erosion along those areas of the Lake St. Clair shoreline within the jurisdiction of the LTVCA, such as the Lighthouse Cove area and the shoreline of Dover Township.
People should take extra caution and avoid the shoreline, river, ditches, and streams. The combination of slippery banks and rough or fast moving cold water can be dangerous. Standing water can also present its own unseen hazards. Children, pets and livestock 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 May 10th, 2017.
Contact: Jason Wintermute (email@example.com) regarding this message.