While spring brings the promise of warmer weather and longer days, it also brings a variety of conditions, including heavy rain, severe weather, and rapid snowmelt that can increase the risk of flooding in flood-prone areas.
This spring thaw, commonly known as the spring freshet, is a result of snow and ice moving and melting into our lake and river systems, which can last for weeks as the snowpack melts. The District Municipality of Muskoka (the District) reminds residents to prepare for the 2021 spring freshet by creating an emergency plan, preparing your property, putting together a 72-hour kit in case of emergency, and monitoring water levels in Muskoka.
“When it comes to emergency preparedness, we all have a role to play,” shares Jeff McWilliam, chief of paramedic services and emergency planning with the District of Muskoka. “No one knows your property better than you. Assess the risks in and around your property and make a plan. Prepare an emergency kit that will last you and your family at least 72 hours and be sure to include items such as water, food, medications, and supplies for your pet if you have one. Don’t forget to also subscribe to your town or township news page online for flood updates right to your inbox.”
For more information and resources on being prepared for a flood visit muskoka.on.ca/flooding.
Flood plain mapping and real-time water levels
You can now monitor real-time water levels in Muskoka from anywhere.
Flood plain mapping and real-time water levels for Muskoka are available through the Muskoka GeoHub, Muskoka’s online web mapping portal. The Geomatics Information Systems (GIS) team has recently embedded a new feature in the GeoHub Floodline and LiDAR mapping application that now displays a water level station layer showing real-time water levels in Muskoka.
With this new tool, residents will be able to see what the water level is at their property in Muskoka in real-time and compare that with the previous days’ water level reading as well as the historic high water level. The information is linked directly to map services from Natural Resources Canada and the data is updated automatically every day.
You can access Muskoka GeoHub how-to videos at muskoka.on.ca/gis. These videos will show you how to access Muskoka GeoHub, tips, tricks and where to find flood plain maps, and real-time water level information.
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