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High Streamflow Advisory issued for Peace country rivers

The high levels of rain in the forecast for the Peace country have prompted Alberta Environment & Parks to issue a New High Streamflow Advisory for the Smoky River and its tributaries. Water levels in the Kakwa, Cutbank, Redwillow, Wapiti, Simonette, and Little Smoky River are expected to rise, along with Pinto Creek and the Smoky River above Hells Creek and at Watino.

Potential ranges of water level rises at gauged locations in the Smoky Basin are:

Kakwa River: 1.5 – 3.0 m rise from current level
Cutbank River: 1.0 – 2.5 m rise from current level
Redwillow River: 0.6 – 2.5 m rise from current level
Pinto Creek: 1.0 – 3.1 m rise from current level
Wapiti River: 3.0 – 4.5 m rise from current level
Simonette River: 2.5 – 3.5 m rise from current level
Little Smoky River: 1.0 – 3.0 m rise from current level
Smoky River above Hells Creek: 1.0 – 2.6 m rise from current level
Smoky River at Watino: 2.6 – 5.0 m rise from current level

“Water levels in these areas are expected to rise, and although flooding of low-lying areas adjacent to the rivers may be possible, no widespread out-of-bank flooding is expected at this time,” the advisory says.

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Rainfall warnings or severe thunderstorm watches are in place for almost all of northwestern Alberta. Environment Canada is calling for 70 to 90 millimetres of rain by Sunday morning, with some areas like the eastern slopes of the foothills and along the higher terrain near Grande Prairie looking at the possibility of more than 125 millimetres.

Alberta Environment expects river levels to peak Saturday afternoon into Sunday morning. That could change as the rain starts to fall.

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