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Ring Dykes in the Red River Valley

By: plapman , 2:33 PM GMT on February 26, 2013

Today will start mainly sunny but will bring increasing cloudiness this afternoon. The high for today will be 0C(32F).
Tonight will be cloudy with a low of -8C(18F).
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I thought of a new chapter for the flood protection in Manitoba series.
From the Province of Manitoba Website.
•There are 18 ring dike communities in the Red River Valley providing protection up to 1997 levels, plus 0.6 m (2 ft). The dikes protect the communities and can be partially or fully closed during a flood. During the 2009 flood, the ring dikes prevented about $700 million in flood damages to these communities.
•The communities in the Red River Valley with ring dikes are: Emerson, Gretna, Letellier, Rosenfeld, Dominion City, St. Jean Baptiste, Riverside, Rosenort, St. Pierre-Jolys, Aubigny, Morris, Roseau River, Lowe Farm, Ste. Agathe, Brunkild, St. Adolphe, Niverville and Grande Pointe.
•Over 1,800 sites in the valley have been floodprotected - homes, business, farms - preventing another $100 million in damages during the 2009 flood.
•Ring dikes and other forms of flood works protect 95 per cent of the homes, business and farms in the valley.
•The 1997 Canada-Manitoba Partnership Agreement on Red River Valley Flood Protection funded $130 million in enhancements to eight ring dike communities that already had ring dikes; provided for the construction of 10 additional ring dikes; and supported flood protection for homes, farms and businesses.
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In 1979 I worked in the community of Emerson during the flood. The town had been evacuated and only water resource workers, like myself, and a company of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry remained. My job was to sit in the command post with the duty officer while the army patrolled the dykes. if the patrols reported any problems i was taken to the area and checked to see if the problem was serious enough to call out extra men and equipment to resolve the problem.
One morning at 4 am a patrol reported erosion on a temporary dyke that had been built. I asked to bring sand bags and about 20 men to repair the erosion. Not wanting to put men in the water in the dark I told them not to bring in men until it was light.
as soon as dawn broke the men, equipment and sand bags arrived.
Those men certainly earned my respect as they were in the cold river water up to their waists placing poly below the water line and sand bags on top of it to hold it in place.
My shift ended at 8 am and when I had a sleep. When I woke i went out to check the progress and there were still solders in the water being directed by the day shift of water resource workers.
Ring Dyke at Morris from Gov. of Manitoba archives

St. Jean protected by ring dyke from Manitoba government archives.

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

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3. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
9:33 PM GMT on February 28, 2013
plapman has created a new entry.
2. Ylee
10:34 AM GMT on February 27, 2013
Those are neat ring dyke pictures, Tony! I guess Portage is a bit higher in elevation, as according to your list, they don't have a ring dyke! Or is not one needed due to thr Diversion?

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
1. Alleyoops
9:04 PM GMT on February 26, 2013
Thanks for posting this Tony. This is the most interesting so far of all the information you have provided on the Flood prevention and management for Manitoba. It certainly gives one insight as to what goes on in protecting lives and property as best as one can during one of these great floods. Sure hope this year, it will be an easy one for you folks.

Starting to rain here off and on so far. The worse will be overnight. I am sure we will see some snow later as temps dip, but how much will only be determined tomorrow AM...
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About plapman

Retired and loving it. If I'd have known about retirement befor I started my 40 year career with the government of Manitoba I'd have retired first. :)Ah

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