Quebec authorities watch for flooding after heavy weekend rainfall

Authorities keeping watch for Quebec flooding

MONTREAL — Recent heavy rainfall had civil security authorities keeping close tabs on Quebec rivers Monday as minor flooding was reported in various parts of the province.

Heavy rain on Sunday raised the water levels of streams and rivers over a large swath of western, central and southern Quebec, but the situation is expected to stabilize over the next few days.

The organization that monitors flooding in the province said several smaller rivers and streams had reached their limit.

Water levels of larger rivers could continue to rise over the next few days, but they will do so at a slower rate, Hydro Meteo said.

Pierre Corbin, operations manager at the flood-monitoring firm, said recent heavy rains coupled with the annual spring thaw are to blame for the flooding.

Major waterways like the Ottawa, Richelieu, and St. Lawrence Rivers have high water levels this year and the rain caused spikes in the smaller rivers and streams they supply.

Corbin warned with more rain in the forecast this week, authorities will continue to monitor the situation as the threat of more flooding will remain for several days.

A civil security spokesman said several Quebec communities in areas often affected by yearly floods reported flooded roads, but minimal damage.

Gilles Desgagnes said the water levels were more pronounced this year.

“While it’s not dropping as fast as it rose, there is a stabilization,” he said.

Flooding caused the collapse and closure of part of a provincial highway near Rawdon, Que. late Sunday, about 80 kilometres northeast of Montreal.

Mayor Bruno Guilbault said several families were also forced from their homes after the nearby Ouareau River overflowed.

Guilbault said they haven’t seen water levels like this in many years, and hopes the levels will decrease.

“But it always depends on the temperatures and I don’t check the weather,” he said with a laugh.

The Canadian Press

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