(May 8, 2019 – 4 pm)    Lake Nipissing could rise another 22cm and the Mattawa River could climb another 43cm due to the snowmelt in the northern watersheds and the 30-55mm of rain in the forecast, according to today’s updated Flood Warning from the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority’s Flood Warning, extended to May 15.    (Between official Flood Warning Updates, you can also view updates on the Spring 2019 Flood Event Updates page.)


“Increasing outflow from reservoirs in the Abitibi-Timiskaming region are causing Ottawa River levels to rapidly rise which raises the level of the Mattawa River impacting properties in Mattawa, Papineau-Cameron and Mattawan Townships along the river,” said Kurtis Romanchuk, NBMCA Duty Officer.   

Substantial flow is being passed downstream from Lake Temiskaming, due to the warm weather last weekend causing snowmelt in the north, and the forecasted precipitation.  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 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.  

The current forecast peak water level for the Ottawa River at the Town of Mattawa is 155.60m, which is approximately 43cm (17 inches) above its current level, anticipated to peak tomorrow.  Information about the most current forecasted peak water levels for the Ottawa River may be found at the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board website:


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):


Lake Nipissing

Lake Nipissing is currently at elevation 196.37m near North Bay, and is forecasted to continue to rise until its peak in approximately two weeks.  Water level forecasts estimate that Lake Nipissing could reach or exceed elevation 196.59m by next week, which is approximately 22cm (9 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,” added Romanchuk. 

The Parks Creek Backflood Control Structure has been operating on Red Alert and pumping since May 2, to mitigate flooding in the Parks Creek neighbourhood.

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.

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.

The general public is advised of these messages through the www.nbmca.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 15, 4:00pm.

The North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority delivers its flood forecasting program and updates for municipalities, agencies, our partners, and the public as part of our natural hazard management initiatives.  These updates are based on the analysis of data and information collected in concert with the following:

  • Environment Canada
  • Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
  • North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority
  • Ottawa River Regulating Committee
  • Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board
  • Ottawa River Regulation Secretariat
  • Public Services and Procurement Canada
  • Sturgeon-Nipissing-French-Wanapitei Water Management Group
  • Surface Water Monitoring Centre
  • Water Survey of Canada
  • Weather Network



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