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Lake Ontario ties 2017 record

The water levels are still rising, albeit they are rising slower.
Quinte Conservation Authority CAO Brad McNevin told Quinte News Lake Ontario water levels haven’t stabilized as of yet.
McNevin says once water levels do reach their peak, they will stay there for a week or so before they begin to decrease.
A press release issued by Quinte Conservation says Lake Ontario reached the record daily peak of 75.88 m on Thursday,  which was experienced from May 25 to May 28, 2017.
This peak is 82 cm above average for this time of year.
Water levels will continue to slowly rise, reaching their peak within 1-3 weeks.
He says it’s still too early to say when water levels will begin to subside and that we are at the mercy of Mother Nature in regards to how much rainfall is coming.
Lower Trent Conservation Manager of Development Services and Water Resources Janet Noyes says she’s hearing the same thing.

She says all the Great Lakes are experiencing high water levels right now, to the point where both Lake Superior and Lake Erie have also reached record highs.

Noyes says if we get wetter weather that will potentially bring the water levels up another 10 cms.
She did tell Quinte News they are expecting a new report next spring that will show updated 100 year flood levels for Lake Ontario. The ones they are currently working with are from the late 1980s and what we call the 100 year water levels are changing.
Noyes says they are in the process up updating their Lake Ontario shoreline management study and as part of that study, a statistical analysis of Lake Ontario has been conducted and what they are seeing so far is that the water levels on Lake Ontario are higher than were first identified in the ’80s.
Lake Ontario water levels are influenced by uncontrolled, above average outflows from Lake Erie, and local rainfall and runoff throughout the Lake Ontario Watershed, and reduced Lake Ontario outflows, in order to balance flooding impacts on the St. Lawrence River.

Lake Erie water levels and outflows into Lake Ontario remain at a record high. St. Lawrence River levels around Montreal remain near record highs for this time of year.

Ottawa River flows continue to slowly decline. Flooding continues on the Lower St. Lawrence River.

Flooding and other high water impacts continue on Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, and the Upper St. Lawrence River.

Outflows from Lake Ontario will continue to increase as rapidly as conditions will allow in accordance with the Plan 2014 F-Limit.

Flooding and other high water impacts have been reported from areas of Lake Ontario and the upper St. Lawrence River during periods of strong winds.

Shoreline residents are advised to either secure or remove loose items from their properties where there is a risk of encroaching flood water. Sandbags can be effective in protecting residences. Sandbags are not intended to protect accessory buildings. For more information on shoreline protection, contact the Quinte Conservation office and speak with expert staff in the planning and regulations department.

It is important that the public never wade through or play in flood water as it is extremely unsafe. Flood water can be contaminated with septic and hazardous debris.

Residents concerned that their shoreline well or septic has been compromised, should contact their local health unit. Do not drink the water and find an alternative water source to use. This message does not apply to municipal drinking water systems.

Residents are advised to obey any posted road closure signs and to check with their municipality for updates on road closures and boat launch closures.

The high water is prompting the Ontario Provincial Police to also issue warnings.

The Lennox and Addington OPP continue to remind boaters to  exercise caution on the waterways as floating and/or submerged debris and obstacles present the potential for collision with vessels and other watercraft.

Additionally, wakes from passing vessels can increase the damage from erosion to property already at risk from increased water levels. Many property owners are reporting damage to their properties that is being exacerbated by vessel wakes so the OPP is asking boaters to be cognizant of the risk their wakes pose to these properties.

The OPP reminds vessel operators that Canada Shipping Act regulations limit the maximum speeds of vessels within 30 metres of shore to 10 km/h.  Violations of the regulations are subject to fines.


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