The City of Kenora has created a new way for residents to keep track of road conditions in the evacuation area north of the by-pass.

The city says after researching flooding safety standards, their new Trigger Point Evaluation System lays out action plans for when flood waters reach certain ‘trigger points’ on local roadways.

The system states that a flood watch will be issued when staff need to monitor a certain road. When water approaches the roadway, an evacuation alert will be issued. When there is water over the road that is less than 6”, an evacuation warning will be issued.

An evacuation order and road closure will be used when there’s over 6” of water on the roadway, and the road will also be closed if it is unsafe for travel due to any reason other than flooding.

“We’re continuing to monitor our areas and we’re looking for new areas that are popping up as water levels rise,” explains Kenora’s Fire Chief and Community Emergency Management Coordinator, Kent Readman.

“If you’re driving through a small amount of water, that water could quickly rise and become dangerous. Anything that’s over 6” will be an evacuation order and we’ll be closing those roads. We’re just making things more streamlined. We do expect water levels to continue to rise and we want to be prepared,” he adds.

You can find the city’s new Trigger Point Evaluation System and the status of local roadways HERE.

The City of Kenora issued its initial Evacuation Notice for flooded areas on May 12, before upgrading the notice to an Evacuation Order for all residents north of the by-pass and north of the Portier Bridge on May 13.

On May 27, the City of Kenora announced that a number of roadways in the community’s evacuated area would be able to reopen after a re-evaluation from the city’s lead engineers. At that time, Essex Road, School Road and Coker Road were the only roads that remained closed.

But by June 2, Kenora had issued an evacuation order for residents on Sedesky Road and Wildwood Drive due to the flooding, with a flood watch in effect for Herbacz Road, Golf Course Road and Gould Road.

Now, as of June 8, Coker Road east of Kelly Road, Essex Road at the Hooterville Trail and Sedesky Road remain closed, but the Beggs and Essex Loop Road was able to reopen on June 6. An evacuation warning has been issued for Second West Bay Road, with a possible closure on Golf Course Road.

Railway Street, Highway 17 at Dingwall Ford, First Avenue South, Gould Road, Herbacz Road and Pine Cone Road remain areas of concern for the city. School Road, as well as East Melick Road at Essex, the Portier Bridge and the swamp north of the bridge all remain open.

The City of Kenora is asking residents to help report flooding or rising water levels in the area. You’re asked to send an email to service@kenora.ca to report water that is at concerning levels, or flooded roads. You may also call City Hall at 467-2000 between Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.