Ottawa River Flood

As you are aware, Ottawa River water levels have risen over the past few weeks as a result of snow melt from the northern areas of the Ottawa River and higher-than-average rainfall.

Environment Canada has issued a Special Weather Statement for possible rainfall of 50 mm between Friday, May 5 and Saturday, May 6. This rainfall is additional to the 60 mm that has already fallen in some areas in Ottawa and the region. The ground is now saturated and runoff will increase in the river.

As a result, the level of the Ottawa River is expected to peak Sunday or Monday.

If your property is at risk, please call 3-1-1.  If it is an emergency situation, call 9-1-1.

What the City is doing

The City is in Enhanced Operations and multiple City services have been responding. Ottawa Fire Services have been on-site in flood-prone neighbourhoods and have gone door-to-door to perform wellness checks.

Public Works and Environmental Services (PWES) have switched to drainage control operations and are taking precautionary measures to reduce the effects of potential flooding. Further, PWES will continue to supply sand and bags at heavily affected areas, which are also available at strategic locations across the city.

Sand and empty bags are available at the following locations: (Residents are asked to bring their own shovels)

  • 911 Industrial Avenue
  • 2264 Colonial Road (Navan)

Emergency reception and lodging centres have also been identified and have been activated.

Their locations are:

  • Royal Canadian Legion 616, 377 Allbirch Rd
  • François Dupuis Recreation Centre, 2263 Portobello Boulevard

Where to get information

The City’s website, ottawa.ca, has a flooding page which includes information on where to get sandbags and what to do if you’re at risk. It will be continually updated with information as it comes. The City’s Twitter account and Facebook will also provide information on an ongoing basis.

The City is also staffing up its 3-1-1 call centre for flooding requests. If you have non-flooding related requests for service that are not urgent, there are numerous service requests available on ottawa.ca. By using this tool, you are freeing up the phone lines for those who may be experiencing flooding.

How to reduce damage

Residents in flood-prone areas can reduce flood damage by taking these preventative steps:

  • Move valuables and important documents out of the basement
  • Ensure sump pumps and foundation drains are connected and functioning properly
  • Ensure downspouts or water run-off is flowing to water drainage systems.
  • Use sandbags – sand and bags are available for free. Locations are listed on the City of Ottawa website.

The City is working closely with the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board to monitor the situation throughout the weekend.