Keeping an Eye on the Winter Melt

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Spring has been a long time coming to Sault Ste. Marie but melting of the snowpack has begun.

The best weather conditions for a slower snowmelt are moderate daytime temperatures followed by freezing temperatures during the night.

The weather forecast over the next few days indicates a continuing warming trend with freezing temperatures overnight.

There is a chance of 15-20 mm of precipitation on Wednesday night through Thursday of this week but no significant rainfall amounts are currently forecast.

The snowpack in the watershed contains a large amount of water equivalent and the slow thaw that we have been experiencing has assisted in decreasing the depth of the snowpack and some of the water equivalent.

Water levels in local rivers have begun to increase but are well below flood levels.

Water levels will continue to increase as melt progresses.

The flood control channels owned and maintained by the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority are flowing and melt water is entering the system.

As melt continues and anticipated rainfalls are received, the flood control channels will experience a rise in water levels.

It is important to remember that the water in rivers, streams and the channels is extremely cold and fast flowing waters are dangerous.

The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority will be closely monitoring stream flows across the watershed.

The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority would like to extend a warning to residents and visitors to use extreme caution when close to rivers, creeks and channels.

Potential increases in water levels and flows can be especially dangerous and stream banks can be slippery.

Please keep children and pets away from fast flowing rivers and streams.

This statement is in effect until Tuesday April 07, 2015.