Caution urged near waterways while snow melts

The region’s watercourses are finally beginning to respond to the recent warming of temperatures. Daytime high temperatures for the weekend are expected to approach 10˚C and probably not drop back below freezing overnight. In addition, a small amount of rainfall, around 3mm is being predicted. This will cause flows in the region’s local watercourses to begin to rise. However, flooding of the watercourses is not expected over the weekend.

Ice cover on the Thames River is still largely intact throughout the river; however, there are stretches that are opening up. All along the river, warm water inputs from local drainage and storm sewers have melted the ice along the banks making accessing the river for recreational activities dangerous. While there is still a significant thickness of ice at the mouth of the Thames, the quality of the river ice is expected to degrade over the next few days.

There is still a bit of snow across the watershed that will be melting over the weekend. Some of the region’s smaller watercourses have lost their ice cover while others may still be filled with snow and ice. These conditions could lead to localized flooding as water may have a difficult time draining off the landscape. Flowing watercourses hidden under the snowpack can also present a danger.

People should take extra caution and avoid the river, lakes, ditches, streams, and ponds. Ice conditions are poor or degrading and a combination of slippery banks, moving/melting ice and cold water is particularly dangerous.  Parents should pay special attention to keep their children away from the water.

The Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority will continue to watch conditions and will issue more messages as required.

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