As weather warms up, New Brunswickers cast wary eyes at melting rivers
The weather is warming up, but there's always a catch in the springtime as the possibility of flooding is top of mind as snow begins to melt.
The sea wall in Peter Reynolds’ backyard is about 10 feet tall, but even that wasn't enough to keep the Kennebecasis River back last year.
“Most of the houses along the river, they were built with the reference of the 1973 flood,” said Reynolds. “So, when you go to get a building permit like the previous owners did, the house elevation was set according to that flood in 1973, right.”
His house was one of many that flooded last spring when water levels hit historic highs in New Brunswick.
But even with temperatures getting milder and snow melting, concern over flooding is being kept at bay - at least for now.
“As long as there's ice in the river, there's still not a concern, but once you get that melt, and you start looking at our low-lying areas, we look at properties that may have been impacted before,” said ice fisherman Gary Losier.
In Rothesay, Brian Hamilton is fishing in the spot where his ice shack once stood.
He took it off the river Wednesday ahead of the rain in the forecast.
“You get a lot of shacks that are stuck in the ice and they're very difficult to get out, so we decided it was a little easier for everybody,” Hamilton said.
Fishermen say the ice here is still several feet thick, but it won't take long to melt.
“This will disappear very fast,” said Mike Boudreau. “I would venture by next weekend, there will be no vehicles here. Hopefully the shacks will be all gone, and you may or may not be able to fish.”
The ice, that still covers the river, an ominous indicator of what could happen in the flood season that's now just days away.
The rain in the forecast for southern New Brunswick will only become a problem if we plunge into a deep freeze, which could lead to drainage problems, but it looks like mild temperatures are here to stay.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Lyall.