Spring thaw floods Quebec during Easter

Published: April 22, 2019

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New Brunswick was not the only province to experience flooding over the Easter weekend, with highwater also reported in Quebec. Authorities in the province say over a thousand homes in Quebec were flooded over the weekend.

The floods have been attributed to heavy rain fall over Easter and increased snowmelt from rising spring temperatures.

Quebec has interestingly just announced a new disaster relief program that restricts how much compensation homeowners can receive if they live in flood-risk areas. Reports suggest the majority of the flood-affected properties over the weekend were in areas south of Quebec City.

Around half of the affected homes were located in Sainte-Marie. Environment and Climate Change Canada meteorologist Marie-Ève Giguère, the province had “exactly the ingredients” for a severe flood event to happen over the Easter weekend.

“A significant thaw, overnight lows above zero and a lot of rain,” the expert explained.

On Monday, the Ottawa and Gatineau rivers stabilized to more normal levels following rising between 6 and 10 centimetres overnight, causing the majority of floods. However, despite receding, some properties in Quebec remain at significant risk.

Gatineau mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin told reporters Monday that nearly one thousand homes in the town were still at risk from flood waters.