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Spring snow brings flood worries

Just one month after wicked weather flooded homes in Sunnyside, Calgary is warning homeowners to prepare for the worst as more springsnowfall blanketed the city.

Just one month after wicked weather flooded homes in Sunnyside, the city is warning homeowners to prepare for the worst as more spring snowfall blanketed the city.

With more snow and warm weather in the forecast this week, city crews are bracing for more flooding and asking residents to take precautions to prevent a repeat of the March 3 storm that swamped dozens of inner city homes. Mike MacIsaac, leader of asset assessment for Calgary water services, said spring snow is always worrying, but with sewers already covered under layers of snow, a quick thaw could be a recipe for residential flooding.

“We’ll be monitoring all the storm sewers and catch basins and a gradual thaw would really help us out, but if not, be ready for sandbagging and emergency calls,” he said.

“With all the snow that’s piled up on residential streets, its caused us a lot of grief — there’s no community or home that is safe from flooding.”

As much as 13 centimetres of snow was reported at the Calgary airport yesterday and with Environment Canada calling for balmy temperatures early this week and more snow on Wednesday, a growing potential exists for overburdened storm sewers to back up.

MacIsaac said city crews are busy clearing some 48,000 catch basins of accumulated snow and ice but residents need to ensure they’re doing all they can to prevent flooding.

Ald. Druh Farrell, who saw dozens of constituents flooded out earlier this month, said the city needs to take a closer look at changing weather patterns and may have to look at new strategies to deal with it.

“We should be expecting more unstable weather and perhaps we need to review how we prepare for it,” she said. “We need to look at new techniques and start investing in new technology.”

 
 
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