Flood warnings issued for parts of New Brunswick
Heavy rain and unseasonably warm temperatures have caused flood watches to be issued in parts of New Brunswick, leading to uncertainty for some residents heading into Christmas.
David Wilson and Douglas Dewitt were out on Saturday morning, surveying the water levels in downtown Sussex, N.B.
They say the sight of flooding isn’t out of the ordinary for this area, but what is unusual is seeing flooding at this time of year.
“This is freak weather,” says Wilson. “You don’t get this kind of warmth in December; usually it would be 30 below zero.”
“It’s weird for this time of year. It’s not common,” adds Dewitt.
Spring is the usual flooding season in this region. But heavy rain and unseasonably warm temperatures led to high water levels in the area today. And it happened quickly.
“We kind of anticipated looking at the forecast 24 hours ago, that it had that kind of potential of a large snow melt to the East, and impacting the stream that runs through the community,” says Scott Hatcher, CAO of the Town of Sussex.
In response, the town launched a partial activation of its emergency operations centre, and the Canadian Red Cross was standing by to help as well.
“We sent out a note to all of our volunteers this morning, just to let them know to be ready to go on a moment’s notice so that we can be where we need to be as quickly as possible,” says Jonathan Spicer of the Canadian Red Cross.
Luckily, flooding fears appear to have now subsided in the community. The town of Sussex downgraded the flood warnings around 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
But in another part of New Brunswick, there is concern about what tomorrow could bring.
The province is warning that the Nashwaak River is expected to reach flood stage on Sunday. Homeowners who have experienced flooding during heavy rain in the past, are being advised to take precautions.
Precautions include clearing any snow, ice or debris from drains, and making sure you move your clear your basements of any valuable possessions.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Lyall.