Flash flooding soaks Winnipeg

Click to play video: 'The city of Winnipeg receives more than 100 calls related to flooding on Friday' The city of Winnipeg receives more than 100 calls related to flooding on Friday
Darren Kellner is one homeowner who called 311 about his basement flooding from a massive downpour Friday night – Jun 25, 2022

Darren Kellner’s Friday night plans were squashed after a massive downpour of rain left him battling basement flooding with his shop vacuum.

“We went from winter to squall season,” says Kellner.

“It smells, it’s soaked, we’ve got fans going, the shop vac was going last night, it’s just a mess.”

He says in a matter of 15 minutes the road in front of his St. James neighbourhood home was completely engulfed by water. Then, it crept about halfway up his lawn.

Read more: Sudden storm, baseball-sized hail creates chaos in southwestern Manitoba

But it was his basement that took the hit as did many of his neighbours’ basements.

“I heard it all last night, ‘I’ve got water in my basement, I’ve got water up to here,’ and who’s going to take care of this now?”

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The city of Winnipeg says they received 17 reports of basement flooding on top of another 105 reports of ditches and streets flooding.

Environment Canada says Friday’s intense rainfall is considered a form of flash flooding.

Read more: 15 years after Elie tornado, Manitoba family that lost home still watches the skies

“Rainfall rates of that 50 millimeters or more in that hour or so can really lead to that localized overland flooding and the drainage systems just can’t keep up with the rainfall intensity is that high,” says Jesse Wagar, a meteorologist with Environment Canada.

“It just depends on which neighbourhood it hits and what the drainage systems are like, the sewer systems, ” she says. “The rainfall rates of that slow moving system in the area really led to some significant rainfall.”

Thunderstorms and showers expected again Saturday, but she doesn’t expect the same level of downfall.

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