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River levels in Ottawa expected to reach flood stage due to rainfall

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Andrea Bagley
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, April 9, 2014, 7:41 AM -

A large and moisture laden system prompted the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority to issue a flood watch on Monday. It was later upgraded to a warning on Tuesday with water levels expected to reach flood stage due to rainfall.

"'Onset of flooding stage' is defined for each flood vulnerable community, as the river level at which access routes serving existing residences are inundated, giving rise to public safety hazards," the statement reads.

Up to 25 mm of rain was reported across the Rideau watershed, contributing to the already significant volume of water in the remaining snow pack.

"River levels are expected to climb through the afternoon and into evening today, and to level off in the early hours of Wednesday," officials said Tuesday.

The City of Ottawa is continuing to remove ice from the river with the "objective of reducing the risk of ice jam induced flooding."

"In the event of an ice jam, water levels can rise rapidly and quite possibly to flood stage in flood vulnerable communities. Ice conditions on the river continue to be monitored closely," the authority said.

Cooler and calmer conditions are expected for the region on Wednesday, holding river flows and levels steady through Wednesday night.

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River levels are expected to increase further later in the week however, as a result of the warmer temperatures and more rain in the forecast.

"Rain is on the way late Thursday afternoon into the evening, and will clear out by Friday," says Weather Network meteorologist Brett Soderholm.

"Parents should inform their children of the risks associated with increased flows and unstable ice conditions in area watercourses and provide appropriate supervision," officials warn.

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