Ottawa

Flooding in the Ottawa region: Your stories

Tears, resignation, exhaustion and anxiety. What the last few days have been like for people whose streets have flooded and who are bracing for worse weather.

'I couldn't stop crying': Flooding hits residents hard

5 years ago
Duration 0:27
Geneviève Landry says she was discouraged when she started seeing water leak into her basement.

Tears, resignation, exhaustion and anxiety. We asked people in Ottawa's Cumberland neighbourhood, in Gatineau and in Clarence-Rockland whose streets and homes have flooded what the last few days have been like.

Here is what they told us.

Geneviève Landry, Cumberland

"We were expecting it, but we didn't think it was going to get this bad," said Geneviève Landry.

Landry and her husband, both realtors, moved to Leo Lane in Cumberland to be by the river. It was their dream home, one they completely remodelled.

"Not finding it so beautiful today," she said.

Their goal on Thursday night was to make their barricade higher, and adding more pumps between the barricade and the house to keep the water in check. But she also has work to do serving her clients.

"Yesterday morning, I was really, really discouraged. I couldn't stop crying," she said.

Glen Roberts, Cumberland

Glen Roberts moved to his home on Armstrong Road in 1989. He has no regrets about moving to the area, despite the flooding.

"I wouldn't change this life for city life at all," he said. "They can bury my ashes in the back."

Roberts said that on last Sunday residents were able to walk on the road without much trouble.

"We thought it was over," he said.

Now residents are trying to get sandbags for the road and Roberts has moved most of his appliances and furniture to the second floor before the weekend brings an expected 30 to 50 millimetres of rain.

"I don't even want to think about the weekend. You've got to be zen like. You've got to take it moment by moment," he said.

Norma Lee Biekra, Gatineau, Que.

"A bit devastated," is how Norma Lee Biekra describes leaving behind her Gatineau home on Wednesday.

Biekra said she put her furniture on blocks or higher up and said she was going to stay at her daughter's home and ride out the weekend storm, then see what damage was done.

"There's not much else we can do," she said.

Biekra is also leaving behind her pet.

"We tried to bring our cat but she's nervous," said Biekra. "She jumped into the water and ran into the backyard. But our neighbours are going to watch for her and the firefighters put food out for her."

Manon Lavergne, Clarence-Rockland, Ont.

Manon Lavergne says the water at her property in Clarence-Rockland, Ont., is still about five feet away from the doors.

But with more bad weather coming, the clock is ticking. On Thursday, the mayor of Clarence-Rockland declared a state of emergency over concerns the weekend's heavy rain will create "havoc" in the community.

Lavergne, a volunteer coordinator working to create sandbags for residents in the community, says the experience has brought her closer to her neighbours.

"It's overwhelming, but I'm super happy to live in Rockland," she said.

But the efforts of the past few days have taken a toll.

"We're getting exhausted," she said.


Do you have a story to tell? Email us at cbcnewsottawa@cbc.ca.

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