Saskatchewan, Alberta residents cope with aftermath of flood

Problems ahead with still more rain on the way, official says

As cleanup from major flooding was underway in Saskatchewan this weekend, emergency officials in southern Alberta were still dealing with overflowing rivers and creeks and bracing for problems in the days ahead. Up to 150 mm of rain has fallen in the region, prompting the evacuation of residents from their homes and patients from a 10-bed hospital in Maple Creek, Sask. Officials in Medicine Hat, Alta. knocked on doors this weekend, suggesting to about 500 residents in a low-lying area that they should leave their homes due to rising waters. Creeks overflowed their banks and water also backed up through drains, gushing along major city roadways and creeping close to houses in the city in southeastern Alberta. The main highway linking Alberta and Saskatchewan has been closed near the provincial boundary, and Highway 41 south to the United States border also remained closed because stretches of tarmac are still under water. The roughly 2,600 residents of Maple Creek, Sask. took stock of the remains of their flooded homes, where pieces of siding and even garden sheds were seen floating in the waters that remained in some areas of the community. Town officials canvassed entire neighbourhoods to check on the welfare of residents trying to cope with the effects of the flooding, giving out information on a provincial disaster assistance program for residents who don’t have insurance. Residents with damaged homes may qualify for a maximum of about $160,000 but there is no maximum limit for damage to property owned by the municipality, according to Saskatchewan deputy fire commissioner Colin King.

Toronto Star