Watershed Conditions Statement – Flood Outlook for Nine Mile River at Port Albert
For the past several months the level of Lake Huron has been very close to the 1986 monthly record highs. Typically the lake experiences a seasonal decline in September and October. Unfortunately this year levels have increased slightly during this period due to high rainfall on the Michigan side of the Lake Michigan – Lake Huron watershed.
This means there will be a heightened risk of flooding and ice-related issues around the mouth of the Nine Mile River for the next several of months. There are three situations in which flooding can be expected:
- Waves produced by strong northwest winds cause sand to accumulate at the mouth of the river and obstruct river flow
- High river flows following rainfall or snowmelt may carry surface ice down the river causing ice jams to form
- The temperature drops quickly when the river is not frozen. The combination of very cold temperatures and open water may lead to the formation of frazil ice that obstructs river flow.
When these conditions occur, the Apple Lane and Maple Lane areas may flood rapidly. The flooding may impact structures and result in a loss of access to these areas. Given the current level of the lake, it is expected that flood levels will be higher than those experienced earlier this year.
Flooding of the Apple Lane and Maple Lane areas area is expected to be an ongoing issue throughout the winter. Residents should remain prepared for such sporadic events and are reminded that it is dangerous to attempt to drive or walk through flood waters. Children and pets should be kept well away from the flooded area. Residents are encouraged to call 519-357-0890 if they notice that flooding is occurring.
Because of the sporadic nature of these events this message is in effect until March 31, 2020 or until sufficient changes to local conditions warrant further updates.
Stephen Jackson, Flood and Erosion Safety Services Coordinator
Types of Flood Messages:
Watershed Conditions Statement – Water Safety – General watershed conditions are being assessed for high runoff potential that could lead to flooding, and to remind the public of general river safety issues.
Watershed Conditions Statement – Flood Outlook – Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.
Flood Watch – Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.
Flood Warning – Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities and individuals should take action to deal with flood conditions. This may include road closures and evacuations.