Weekend rainfall could make waterways dangerous

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With heavy rainfall in the forecast, the Grand River Conservation Authority is urging caution around local waterways over the weekend.

Between 25 and 35 millimetres of rain is forecast to fall in much of the Grand River watershed, with the risk of localized thunderstorms on Sunday.

While there is little snow remaining, ground conditions are saturated, which will increase run-off during the rainfall, said GRCA spokesperson Cameron Linwood.

No significant flooding is expected but river flows will be higher than normal, increasing the safety risk around local waterways.

The GRCA’s major upstream reservoirs will be used to manage run-off.

All GRCA owned and managed parks, natural areas and trails are closed to the public until at least April 7 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

There is no regular maintenance and no hazard management being done on the properties during this time. Using these properties is considered trespassing, said Linwood.

Banks adjacent to rivers and creeks are slippery and, when combined with cold, fast-moving water, pose a serious hazard.

“With schools closed and many families home, parents are encouraged to remind their children of these hazards and keep pets away from all waterbodies,” said Linwood.