Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for heavy rain and wind gusts for Peterborough and the surrounding area beginning Friday night.
In its statement issue around 10:10 a.m. Friday, Environment Canada says beginning Friday night and continuing into Saturday, the region can expect heavy rain between 25 and 40 millimetres and strong winds with gusts between 70 and 90 kilometres per hour.
The statement is in effect for Peterborough, Peterborough County and the City of Kawartha Lakes.
The statement says a strong cold front will make its way through southern Ontario, bringing rain and strong winds. Strong and gusty southwesterly winds are possible Saturday afternoon, while strong and gusty northwesterly winds are expected to set in by Saturday evening.
Temperatures will reach a high of 6 C Friday and up to 13 C on Saturday afternoon but are expected to “rapidly fall” Saturday night, allowing for light snow to develop in the wake of the cold front, the statement reads.
A similar statement is also in effect for Haliburton County but rainfall amounts are expected to be 20 to 40 millimetres and wind gusts up to 70 kilometres per hour with a “risk of brief period of freezing rain.” In Northumberland County, wind gusts could reach up to 110 kilometres per hour, Environment Canada reports.
As a result of the Environment Canada’s special weather statement, on Friday morning, the Otonabee Conservation issued a flood watch for the Peterborough region.
The conservation authority says the rain and temperature changes will result in melting snow and may cause minor flooding in low-lying areas throughout the Otonabee Region watershed, which includes Peterborough, sections of the City of Kawartha Lakes and the townships of Selwyn, Douro-Dummer, Asphodel-Norwood, Otonabee-South Monaghan and Cavan Monaghan, and the Municipality of Trent Hills.
“As a minimum, water pooling on roads and in low-lying areas and higher than normal water levels and flows can be expected, especially in the vicinity of culverts and bridges,” stated Neil MacFarlane, flood forecasting and warning duty officer. “Higher than normal water levels and flows will continue throughout the weekend as the expected rainfall and snow melt flushes through our waterways.”
MacFarlane advises residents to use extreme caution around all water bodies as shorelines will be slippery and currents will be strong.
“Road-side ditches, wetlands and other low-lying areas may experience unsafe ponding conditions,” he said. “Dams and other water control/water conveyance structures are especially dangerous and should always be avoided.”
Area water information can be monitored online at:
- Trent-Severn Waterway’s Water Management InfoNet
- Water Survey of Canada Real-Time Hydrometric Data
- Otonabee Conservation Precipitation and Water Level Data
Water safety statement
As well, Kawartha Conservation issued a water safety statement for its watershed jurisdiction which includes the majority of water bodies within the City of Kawartha Lakes (including 27 lakes), along with the Municipality of Trent Lakes, Cavan-Monaghan Township, and Durham Region municipalities (Scugog, Brock, Clarington).
“The local rivers and streams are flowing at moderately elevated levels, responding to the rain and snowmelt earlier this week,” stated hydrologist Iryna Shulyarenko. “A snow cover of various depths, up to 10 cm, has been observed around the watershed. The ground is saturated or frozen with a limited capacity to absorb additional runoff.
“Under these circumstances, the runoff from the forecast precipitation and snowmelt will increase water levels in local watercourses. No flooding problems within the Kawartha Conservation watershed jurisdiction are anticipated at this time. However, water accumulation in low-lying areas, road ditches, and areas with poor drainage can be expected.