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ENGINEERING REPORT IDENTIFIES SOLUTION FOR HIGHWAY 2 FLOODING

May 24, 2013 -- Today, the Water Security Agency and Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure announced a pumping solution to deal with water overtopping Highway 2 and flooding in the Rural Municipality (RM) of Prince Albert.

“The above average spring runoff in northwest Saskatchewan has created a challenging spring for the RM of Prince Albert and surrounding communities,” Batoche MLA Delbert Kirsch said on behalf of Minister responsible for Saskatchewan Water Security Agency Ken Cheveldayoff.  “This government said we would be there for the people of Saskatchewan and that is why we have the Emergency Flood Damage Reduction program.  In this case, it will help to cover the cost of pumping water to reopen the highway while reducing the risk of flooding to nearby landowners.”

Flooding in this region is a result of an above normal spring runoff in a closed basin that does not have good natural drainage.  The landscape in the area has also complicated the situation more because of the many hills and low lying portions, which makes finding a solution very difficult.

An engineering firm was hired by the Water Security Agency to do an assessment of the area and help determine the best possible solution without impacting other landowners.  After reviewing all the information in the engineering report, the Water Security Agency, Ministry of Highways, the RM of Prince Albert and the engineering consultant felt pumping the water into McFarlane Creek was the fastest way to reopen the highway.  Depending on weather conditions, Highway 2 should be open in the next four-to-six weeks.

“This is a complex situation and it’s been a challenging few weeks for us with the spring runoff,” RM of Prince Albert Reeve Norma Sheldon said.  “We’ve been working closely with the Water Security Agency and the Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure and are pleased to see that this water will soon be moved to help alleviate the pressure on local homeowners, infrastructure in the RM as well as opening the highway.”

Through the Emergency Flood Damage Reduction Program, two pumping stations will be used to move water approximately two miles to McFarlane Creek.  McFarlane Creek then flows into the South Saskatchewan River.  With peak flows on the creek beginning to recede this should not cause any issues downstream.

The Water Security Agency was created to lead implementation of the 25 Year Saskatchewan Water Security Plan.  It will improve water management capacity and service to individuals, businesses and communities across Saskatchewan.  This new agency brings together, for the first time, all of the major responsibilities related to water quality and quantity.

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For more information, contact:

Patrick Boyle
Water Security Agency
Moose Jaw
Phone: 306-694-8914
Email: Patrick.Boyle@wsask.ca 

Doug Wakabayashi
Highways and Infrastructure
Regina
Phone: 306-787-4804
Email: Doug.Wakabayashi@gov.sk.ca