Manitoba

Province plans to open Portage Diversion, Red River Floodway

The province of Manitoba plans to open the Portage Diversion within the next week in an effort to prevent ice jams and manage Assiniboine River water levels between Portage la Prairie and Winnipeg. 

Red River crest expected at Emerson between April 15 and 18

The province plans to start operating the Portage Diversion within the next week. (CBC)

The province of Manitoba plans to open the Portage Diversion within the next week in an effort to prevent ice jams and manage Assiniboine River levels between Portage la Prairie and Winnipeg. 

Manitoba Infrastructure's Hydrologic Forecast Centre said in a news release Friday an Amphibex icebreaking machine has also been working in the diversion channel and at the channel's outlet.

The Portage Diversion is a 29-kilometre channel that starts at an inlet near Portage la Prairie, about 85 kilometres west of Winnipeg, and redirects some water from the Assiniboine River north into Lake Manitoba.

The province says the efforts should keep river flow to 5,000 cubic feet per second on the lower Assiniboine River.

Watching for rain, snow

The province also plans to open the Red River Floodway next week, river flow and ice conditions permitting.

The 47-kilometre long floodway channel diverts part of the Red River's flow around the east side of Winnipeg, from an inlet near St. Norbert to an outlet near Lockport.

The control structure at the Red River Floodway. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

The forecast centre says it continues to watch weather systems that are predicted to bring rain or snow to the Red River and Assiniboine River watersheds over the next 10 days, but the outlook for high water continues to be at or slightly less than the 2009 flood levels. 

The Red River is forecast to crest at Emerson, Man., between April 15 and 18.

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