• Record high water levels have been reached on Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair
• Chance of erosion and minor flooding tomorrow on south facing shorelines such as Erie Shore Drive
Water levels on Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie have broken records. Over the month of May, Lake St. Clair rose about 8 cm and Lake Erie rose around 15 cm. Entering June, water levels on Lake St. Clair were within 2 cm of reaching the monthly average water level record high set in October of 1986. Entering June, water levels on Lake Erie were 8 cm above the monthly average water level record high set in June of 1986. Forecasts for Lake St. Clair are predicting average water levels to stay steady throughout the month, while on Lake Erie average water levels are predicted to fall by only 5 cm by the end of the month. There are some shoreline areas already flooded just due to the high static water levels (i.e. before the effect of winds and waves) including some local access roads.
With such high water levels, shoreline areas are highly vulnerable to shoreline damage, flooding and erosion. Only moderately high winds can lead to water level changes and waves that cause shoreline issues. High winds out of any direction will have an impact on some area along our local shorelines. Wind conditions over the lakes can change quickly and with little warning. With such low wind thresholds, forecasts can’t be expected to predict every small wind event and unexpected localized flooding may occur. Winds out of the west or north above 30 km/hr could be expected to cause issues in the area of Lighthouse Cove on Lake St. Clair. Winds out of the south (southeast to southwest) above 30 km/hr start to cause problems for south facing shorelines on Lake Erie such as Erie Shore Drive. Winds out of the east and northeast above 35 km/hr start to cause problems around Rondeau Bay communities such as Erieau and Shrewsbury. Bluff areas are also at greater risk of erosion due to the high lake levels. Shoreline residents need to pay attention to local conditions and prepare accordingly.
Some weather forecasts are calling for sustained winds from the southwest tomorrow reaching 30 km/hr. There is quite a bit of variability in the forecasts and if wind speeds do reach that high, the timing is also uncertain. Waves would be expected between 0.5 m and 1.0 m in height. Shoreline residents should pay attention to local conditions for indications that winds are becoming stronger than forecasted and prepare accordingly.
Should conditions get rough, people should take extra caution and avoid the shoreline. 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 shoreline. 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.
Contact: LTVCA Administration Office (519-354-7310) regarding this message.
This message will be in effect until June 5, 2019.