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North Sask. River to rise following heavy fainfall

Saskatchewan’s Water Security Agency expects the North Saskatchewan River to rise by about 1.5 metres following last week’s rainfall. Headwaters have seen higher precipitation with areas west of Edmonton seeing 50 to 117 mm between June 18 and 21. While flows on the North Saskatchewan River have been below normal over the first part of June, the rain is leading to a substantial increase.

Flows on the North Saskatchewan River are expected to increase from 320 cubic metres per second (m3/s), peaking near 1,000 m3/s. This will be similar to a high flow event experienced in June of 2017. This will cause water levels to increase, with the Battlefords peaking about 1.2 m above current levels and Prince Albert expected to peak at about 1.6 m above current levels.

Flows are already increasing near the Alberta-Saskatchewan border and are expected to peak there on June 25. Peaks are expected to be observed at the Battlefords around June 26 and at Prince Albert around June 29. While this event is not expected to result in any flooding, it may have impacts on ferries and water intakes and pose a hazard for recreational users.

Flows from SaskPower’s hydroelectric facilities on the Saskatchewan River, Nipawin and EB Campbell, will also be increasing over the course of the week in advance of these higher flows arriving. With Cumberland Lake at a lower than normal level and with low flows on the South Saskatchewan River, this event is not expected to result in any flood-related impacts at Cumberland Lake.

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