Twin Lakes Beach homeowners raise new flood fears
Some residents want province to stop operating Portage Diversion
Homeowners in Twin Lakes Beach are closely watching water levels on Lake Manitoba, worried that high winds and rainfall amounts could lead to flooding similar to what happened in 2011.
A major windstorm in 2011 caused water levels at Lake Manitoba to rise and flood hundreds of properties in the area.
Some residents have since repaired or rebuilt their homes, but they're worried history may repeat itself this spring.
"It's just a lot of anxiety. It's the uncertainty of the whole situation," homeowner Jack King told CBC News on Monday.
At the time of the 2011 flood, the province was pushing water into Lake Manitoba through the Portage Diversion, in an effort to save homes along the Assiniboine River from flooding.
But when the windstorm hit, King's home was one of hundreds at Twin Lakes Beach that flooded.
King said he's had to spend $25,000 to rebuild his property, and he's angry that the provincial government continues to send water through the Portage Diversion.
"Traditionally this is the time when we get wind events out here," he said. "The higher the water, the more likely it's going to be driven onto the land."
Fred Pisclevich, who had to rebuild his home after the 2011 flood, said his new house is at risk of being flooded even though the government put up geotubes to protect properties.
"All the work that we've done in filling and everything else is in jeopardy," he said.
Both Pisclevich and King are calling on the province to shut down the Portage Diversion and come up with a long-term flood mitigation plan for homes in Twin Lakes Beach.
Last week, provincial officials said they tried to send less water through the diversion to lessen the pressure on Lake Manitoba, but that led to flooding along the Assiniboine River.
The water level on Lake Manitoba is currently below what it would normally be if it wasn't for the diversions, but that level is slowly creeping up to the flood stage, the province says.
Western parts of the province received about 200 per cent more rain than usual in the past couple months, causing water levels to rise, officials said.