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by Doug Harvey
Preparing For Flooding In Port Stanley

Living close to Kettle Creek or the shores of Lake Erie could put you and your family at risk during heavy rains, snowmelt, spring breakup and ice jams, or any wind-related storm surge event for flooding. Knowing how to prepare and what to do during a flood or any type of emergency in your area can significantly lower the risk of injury or disease.

On January 29, 2020 residents of Port Stanley were invited to join Kettle Creek Conservation Authority, the Municipality of Central Elgin and the South West Public Health for a public information session at the Port Stanley Arena on how to prepare for flooding.

Kettle Creek Conservation Authority in cooperation with the Municipality of Central Elgin play a significant role in the protection of life and property from natural hazards such as flooding by flood forecasting, monitoring and notification which allows communities an opportunity to put emergency plans into operation, evacuate communities if necessary, and secure property in areas that are more likely to flood.

At any time of the year, when there is flooding, the Kettle Creek Conservation Authority will issue three levels of messages:

  • Watershed Conditions Statement
    • Water Safety indicates that high flows, unsafe banks, melting ice or other factors could be dangerous for users such as anglers, boaters, swimmers, children or pets. Flooding is not expected.
    • Flood Outlook gives early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.
  • Flood Watch - Notifies that the potential for flooding exists within specific watercourses and municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood- prone areas should prepare.
  • Flood Warning - Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities and individuals should take action to deal with flood conditions. This may include road closures and evacuations.

Steps that can be taken to manage risk that floods pose to people and property.

Learn How To Prepare Three-day Supply Per Person Emergency Survival Checklist

  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Radio and batteries or crank radio
  • Spare batteries (for radio or flashlight)
  • First-aid Kit
  • Candles and matches/lighter
  • Extra car keys and cash
  • Important papers (identification)
  • Food and bottled water
  • Clothing and footwear
  • Blankets or sleeping bags
  • Toilet paper and other personal items
  • Medication
  • Backpack/duffel bag (to hold all of the emergency survival kit items)
  • Whistle (to attract attention, if needed)
  • Playing cards

Before the flood

  • Learn about your municipality's emergency plan, Notification App and warnings, evacuation routes and locations for emergency shelters.
  • Listen to warnings and advisories on mobile phone, radio, television, web sites and posted to social media.
  • Follow instructions of emergency response officials, such as police, fire and municipal staff.
  • Follow instructions from your utility supplier to safely shut down and protect furnaces and other appliances.
  • Ensure your pets and livestock are relocated ahead of time outside of the flood prone area.
  • Secure or remove large items located in the flood plain such as lawn furniture, boats, canoes, kayaks, docks, barbeques, sheds etc.
  • Prepare a 72-Hour Emergency kit that can be easily accessed in case of evacuation.

During the flood

  • Prepare to evacuate if necessary. Collect necessary items such as cash, medication, important papers, identification and change of clothes.
  • Resist the urge to tour flooded areas. You may be putting your own life at risk and could interfere with the work of emergency responders.
  • Abide by road closed signs. Avoid, when possible, driving across a flooded road. The floodwaters could be hiding unseen dangers, or force your vehicle off the roadway.

After the flood

  • Do not return home until authorities advise it is safe to do so.
  • If you suspect your building has suffered structural damage, contact your municipal building department.
  • If your main power switch was turned off prior to flooding, or your main electrical panel was underwater do not re-enter your home until a qualified electrician has determined it is safe to.
  • Do not eat food that has come into contact with flood waters. If your drinking water is from a municipal source consult your municipality to determine if it is safe to drink. If your drinking water is from a private well, have your well checked by a qualified well technician, and your water tested.
  • All damaged household items should be discarded through municipal solid waste removal where possible or taken directly to a commercial waste facility.

For more information visit:
Kettle Creek Conservation Authority
Municipality of Central Elgin
South West Public Health

Last Updated: Thursday, 30 January 2020 09:36:31 AM EST

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