ERCA Issues Flood Watch For Erie Shoreline

High waves in Leamington cause flooding June 27, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Franny Gaudreau)

The Essex Region Conservation Authority (ERCA) says high winds may lead to flooding Thursday and Friday.

ERCA has issued a flood watch for the Lake Erie shoreline. Strong southwest winds have increased the potential for flooding on the western shore of Point Pelee National Park, Leamington west of Point Pelee, Kingsville, Essex, and the west and south shores of Pelee Island.

Forecasters say the high lake levels and sustained winds of up to 40 km/h are increasing the likelihood of nearshore erosion with water spray and wave overtopping. Winds may gust up to 65 km/h.

John Henderson, a water resources engineer for ERCA, says in a press release that the west shore of Point Pelee is already experiencing some shoreline damage. Municipal staff is being asked to monitor the area for any additional damage that could affect the adjacent roadway.

ERCA says people should take extra caution and avoid shoreline areas during events like this. The combination of slippery banks, waves, waves overtopping breakwalls, and fast-moving water can be dangerous. Children, pets, and livestock should be kept away from flowing, standing water, and shoreline or breakwall areas.