Residents advised of above average flows on the Churchill River System; safety concerns possible

June 3, 2020 -- The Water Security Agency (WSA) advises the public that stream flows are above normal in all portions of the Churchill River System east of Peter Pond Lake.

Residents living along these areas are advised that high flows pose a safety risk and high water levels could damage property and infrastructure over the coming days. Further increases are expected from the rainfall received and expected this week.

The combination of above normal precipitation over the past month, along with snowmelt runoff volumes are resulting in above normal flows within central and eastern areas of the basin. Stream flows and lake levels in middle portions of the basin are particularly high. The middle portions of the basin include the Haultain, Smoothstone, Rapid, and Montreal Rivers.

Conditions have been particularly wet from Montreal Lake up to La Ronge and over to Hatchet Lake where rainfall accumulations have been 200-250% of normal over the past month. In this area, streamflows are about 2 to 3 times normal for this time of year.

The control structure at Lac La Ronge has been fully open since May 26.  However, the lake is at above normal levels and continuing to rise in response to above normal inflows. At an elevation of 364.40 m on June 3, Lac La Ronge is at the top of its desirable operating range but is not expected to increase much further unless the area receives significant additional precipitation.

Conditions in the basin have been wetter than normal going back to the fall of 2016 with the highest flows over that period experienced in the summer of 2017. In many locations, flows are approaching 2017 levels.  

All users are additionally advised to use caution around the watercourses within the basin as swift moving water can pose a hazard and to take steps to protect property where necessary.

For further information, contact:

Patrick Boyle

Water Security Agency