Sackville flooding likely from dyke breaches
Communities, government must work together to prevent floods, scientist says
The Town of Sackville is at risk of flooding due to breaches in the Tantramar dyke system, according to scientists in the area.
Although the dyke system protects the town, low-lying farm lands, parts of the Trans Canada Highway and CN Rail lines, a recent study indicates it will not hold back the Bay of Fundy waters forever.
Sea waters are rising, the Maritimes are sinking and storm surges are coming north more often, said Dr. David Lieske, who teaches geography at Mount Allison University.
Evidence indicates water from the Bay of Fundy will overcome the dykes, if not destroy parts altogether, and residents of Sackville should expect flooding, he said.
"Not even having a look at the future, this is a risk we face today, but it is just going to continue to ratchet itself up," said Lieske.
"We're vulnerable, we've relied historically on the dykes and they have done a very good job up until now, but in the loads that we're expecting, what is going to happen is that the vulnerability is going to be exposed more and more."
The community, the government and the municipality will have to work together to prepare for the coming floods, said Lieske.
"We have moved all our cars when we know there's a storm surge or high winds," said Matt Allen, whose car lot and garage are located on a flood plain in downtown Sackville.
Allen said there has been minor flooding on his street, but he's suffered no damages so far.
"I myself don't think it's going to happen, but I mean it's a possibility … you can't control the weather, right?" said Allen.
He said he would rather move his cars around a few times a year than have to deal with insurance claims.