‘The numbers are up across the board’: NB EMO warns flood-prone communities to pay attention

New Brunswick’s Emergency Measures Organization (EMO) is making its first spring prediction of a community hitting flood stage.

St. Hilaire, in northwestern New Brunswick, is projected to hit, then surpass the flood stage on Saturday. The water level is forecast to increase further as the weekend progresses, hitting about a meter above the flood stage level on Sunday evening.

As of Tuesday, flood advisories are in effect for St. Hilaire, Perth-Andover, Woodstock, Durham Bridge, Jemseg, Gagetown, and Saint John-Quispamsis. The stages after a flood advisory are a flood watch, then a flood warning.

“The numbers are up across the board,” said Geoffrey Downey of NB EMO. “If your community is prone to flooding, certainly now is the time to start paying attention, especially if your property is also at risk.”

NB Power said Tuesday it’s spilling about 100,000 cubic feet of water per second through the gates of the Mactaquac Dam. During the flood of 2018, about 325,000 cubic square feet of water from the Saint John River passed through the Mactaquac Dam per second.

Markus Harvey, a resident of Maugerville, NB, is fully aware of how quickly the river can change and is preparing for the weekend ahead.

“There will be a raise come Saturday, Sunday, Monday just because of the nature of the full moon and the tides,” he said. “For us, everything that happens here starts up north. There’s still a lot of snow up north.”

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