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Long Term Flood Watch Issued

Tuesday July 2nd, 2019, 8:04pm


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This article is 1305 days old.
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The Essex Region Conservation Authority has issued a long-term flood watch for the entire region.

They say that areas of concern are the low-lying beach communities and shoreline areas along Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, and Lake Erie, as well as low lying areas along the downstream reaches of major tributaries.

Current lake levels for Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie are surpassing record monthly means. From the month of May to the month of June, Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie rose approximately 10 cm and 9 cm, respectively. This set new all-time high monthly mean records for both lakes with monthly means of 175.99 metres for Lake St. Clair and 175.14 metres for Lake Erie. Based on this information, Lake St. Clair surpassed the previous all time high monthly mean level set in October 1986 by approximately 3 cm, while Lake Erie surpassed the established all time high monthly mean level just recently set in May 2019 by 9 cm.

As we enter the month of July, Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie are at an elevation of 176.04 metres and 175.18 metres, respectively. These levels are static water levels, meaning they do not account for wind-driven setup or waves.

They warn that these levels bring an elevated risk of flooding and erosion across the watershed. Typically, sustained wind speeds in the range of 40 to 50 km/hr or higher are associated with an increased risk of flooding, shoreline erosion, and damage to shoreline structures. Elevated lake levels have significantly reduced the required wind speed to cause these issues, as we have experienced multiple occurrences of flooding with much slower wind speeds from various directions.

This warning will remain in effect until July 16, 2019 at which time conditions will be reevaluated.

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