What the latest storm is expected to bring to Manitoba

The latest forecast in Manitoba shows the flooding situation could get worse before it gets better.

On Thursday, the province released its latest flood bulletin, saying a potentially severe weather system is being monitored.

The system could bring anywhere from 20 to 50 millimetres of rain to southern and central Manitoba, with the majority of it expected to fall on Friday.

“The forecast rain will impact flows and levels in most rivers and creeks with the highest impact likely in western and southeast Manitoba,” the province said in a release.

Areas such as Duck Mountain and the upper Assiniboine and Qu’Appelle river basins could see up to 60 mm of rain.

“While there is still uncertainty in the weather forecast, there is a band through central Manitoba stretching into the Interlake region that is projected to receive lower amounts of precipitation.”

Southern Manitoba is also expected to be hit by strong winds and there is a chance of ice pileup on the east shore of Lake Manitoba.

“The strong winds tomorrow could also cause water levels in flooded areas of the Red River Valley to rise by up to a foot in some areas.”

HOW MANITOBA GOT INTO THIS SITUATION

While the latest forecast suggests more precipitation will be added to the already waterlogged province, the flooding situation can be partially attributed to the heavy snowfall that was seen during the winter.

While it is viewed as the catalyst of the flooding, the main source came from a pair of Colorado lows that hit the province while the winter snow was trying to melt.

The first low came to Manitoba on April 13, and brought blizzard conditions that ground the province to a halt.

Then there were back-to-back weekends of rain. The second Colorado low brought heavy precipitation and then a week later on April 23 and 24 another 70 mm caused severe overland flooding.

The water caused several roads and overpasses to close in Winnipeg; cars were stranded; and farmers’ fields in southern Manitoba started to flood as well.

Then on April 30, another low pressure system brought more rain. Homes were evacuated in Morden and streets were washed out.

This was followed by more rain in early May which caused flooding in the Interlake area and Peguis First Nation.

April was the wettest it has been in 131 years and, according to Environment and Climate Change Canada, Winnipeg received 118 mm of precipitation which made it the second wettest April on record.

Records were also broken in areas like Morden and Emerson.