(May 16, 2019 – 11:30 am)    Water levels on Lake Nipissing continue to rise, affecting the lower reaches of the La Vase River, Parks Creek, and Jessups Creek, and the Ottawa River remains extremely high at Mattawa.  Substantial precipitation is forecast through this week promoting the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority to update and extend its Flood Warning to May 22.

Substantial precipitation is forecast through this week, with 8-10mm possible today, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, for a total of 40mm over the next five days. Highs will range from 10-15 degrees Celsius, with lows of 2-10 degrees Celsius. A southwest wind is forecasted at 27km/h for Monday, gusting above that.


“The current forecast water level for the Ottawa River at the Town of Mattawa is 155.50m (above sea level) today, which is approximately 18cm (7 inches) above its level this morning,” said Kurtis Romanchuk, NBMCA Duty Officer.  “However, it’s also expected that this forecast will change as a result of continued snowmelt and the forecast rain.”

Flow is continued is being passed downstream from Lake Temiskaming.  Otto Holden dam is passing through the flow it receives from the Temiskaming dam, which has a strong effect on the Ottawa River downstream.  The rising levels of the Ottawa River pushes upstream into the Mattawa River affecting properties in Mattawa, Mattawan Township and Papineau-Cameron Township along the river.

Information about the most current forecasted water levels for the Ottawa River may be found at the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board website: http://www.ottawariver.ca/Forecast-2019.pdf The current Ottawa River water level may be viewed at the Water Survey of Canada (WSC) website (note that there is a delay of several hours, and 100m should be added to the gauge reading for metres above sea level):


 The Town of Mattawa reports that sand and bags are available at their municipal public works yard, Municipal public works garage 1276 Mills St. Mattawa.  Volunteer assistance is welcome.  Municipal office 705-744-5611.  Boat traffic on the Mattawa River is now restricted below the Hurdman Dam to protect the shoreline and properties from wave damage.

Lake Nipissing

Lake Nipissing is currently at elevation 196.49m near North Bay, staying relatively stable since yesterday, however it is expected that the Lake will continue rising for another 1-2 weeks. Water level forecasts estimate that Lake Nipissing could reach or exceed elevation 196.59m, which is approximately 10cm (4 inches) over its current elevation.

“Strong wind and storm surge may increase local water levels substantially, as well as wave action. This may pose a threat to properties along the Lake Nipissing and Callander Bay shoreline, as well as along the lower La Vase River, particularly if there are strong winds or waves,”  said Romanchuk.

The Parks Creek Backflood Control Structure has been operating on Red Alert and pumping since May 2, to help mitigate flooding and sewer back-up for 350 homes in the Parks Creek neighbourhood.  The pump will remain in operation until Lake Nipissing’s water levels return to normal levels.

Information about the current status of Lake Nipissing may be found at the PWGSC website:


The current Lake Nipissing water level may be viewed at the WSC website (note that there is a delay of several hours, and 190m should be added to the gauge reading for metres above sea level):


Updates on conditions can be found on the NBMCA website:  https://www.nbmca.ca/watershed-management/flood-forecasting/spring-2019-flood-event-updates/

The City of North Bay City is taking precautionary measures for flood prevention and property protection by making sand and sandbags available starting Wednesday, May 8 at Sunset Park at the end of Sunset Boulevard and Champlain Park at the end of Premier Road. The stations will be open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Cautions to Residents

All residents, especially those in low-lying areas, are encouraged to monitor the conditions that are developing.  Parents are encouraged to keep their children and pets away from watercourses and waterbodies.

If your property is at risk of flooding, please contact your municipality.  If you live in an unincorporated township, please contact Graham Mewett at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry – North Bay District office at 705-475-5529.

Municipalities are encouraged to monitor water crossings and respond to high water levels.  A close watch on local conditions and updated forecasts and warnings from Environment Canada is also recommended.

Staff at the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority will continue to monitor weather and watershed conditions and provide updates if conditions change.  Updates are posted on the website www.nbmca.ca under Spring 2019 Flood Update link on the home page.

The general public is advised of these messages through the www.nbmca.on.ca website with the flood status icon and a link to information about current conditions.  NBMCA also circulates these messages to local media and social media, posting on Twitter (@theNBMCA), Instagram (nbmcainfo), and Facebook (NBMCA).

The public is invited to share photos of watershed conditions on social media using #NBMCAFlood.

This message will be in effect until (or updated before) Wednesday, May 22, 2019 at 4:00pm.



CONTACT:   Kurtis Romanchuk, Duty Officer, 705 474-5420
Sue Buckle, Supervisor Communications & Outreach, 705 474-5420 ext 2010