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City responds to area flood damage (8 photos)

Friday, September 13, 2013   by: Staff



City responds to unprecedented rainfall conditions

SAULT STE. MARIE - The City of Sault Ste. Marie experienced an extraordinary and unforeseen amount of heavy rainfall on September 9, 2013.

Rainfall measurements, as reported to the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (SSMRCA), amounted to 86 mm within a four-hour period beginning at 10:30 p.m.

Total rainfall on September 9 and 10, 2013 was equal to 140.2 mm.

The extreme amount of rain caused significant damage to City infrastructure and private homes.

Public Works and Transportation crews were immediately called upon to open up flooded roadways; clean debris collected on main roads; clear plugged storm grates and provide assistance to the SSMRCA to ensure local flood channels were clear of debris.

To ensure public safety, barricades were installed on roadways damaged from high water levels and erosion.

Most of the 16 roadways closed as a result of the storm have been cleared and are now open.

Several private driveway entrances have also been repaired.

The following roads will remain closed until further notice:

  • Allen Side Road between Fourth Line and Third Line at bridge
  • Fourth Line East between Great Northern Road and Root River Bridge

Accumulated high water in creeks and soil erosion caused varying degrees of structural damage to local bridges.

Several bridges still require engineering inspections to allow further usage.

The following bridges will remain closed until further notice:

  • Allen Side Road near Bar X
  • Fourth Line East at Glengary Gate Crescent and Landslide Road
The bridge on Old Goulais Bay Road near Sixth Line is passable.

Traffic is reduced to one lane with access only by vehicles five tonnes or less.

Over 20 km of roadway shoulders experienced erosion damage and many ditches were filled with debris during the rain storm.

Work crews were engaged without delay to begin addressing damage to both gravel shoulders and ditches.

The City would like to report that both sewage treatment plants and all pumping stations performed as designed during the storm period.

Were it not for the significant improvements made in recent years to the City’s storm and channel diversion programs, damage would have been much worse.

All available City personnel will continue to work around the clock to address all matters relating to the recent flood.

The public should be cautious in all areas damaged by high water conditions and take notice of barricades and construction cones erected for public safety.

Residents are asked to report tampering of barricades and other safety equipment.

Please call the Public Works and Transportation Department at 705-759-5201.

During the week of September 9 to 14, 2013, the gate fee at the City Landfill site has been waived as a public service to encourage the proper disposal of accumulated items not picked up by the City’s residential refuse collection program.

This period has been extended to September 21 to assist residents affected by flooding to dispose of damaged household goods.

The Landfill site located at 402 Fifth Line East is open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturdays.

Damage assessment and repairs will be ongoing by City work crews until all areas affected by the storm have been addressed.

Crews will continue to work around the clock to avoid further loss.

To date, the City has not declared a state of emergency in Sault Ste. Marie but will reconsider this position once final information is received regarding structural loss.

The City thanks citizens for their continued cooperation and patience.

Residents can report roadway or other concerns as a result of the storm directly to the Public Works and Transportation Department at 705-759-5201.

Pictured above: CN rail line bridge washout at Root River. Photo provided by Cindy Wright.

Gallery images of flooding at Hiawatha provided by reader Michelle Serafin.

View Photo Gallery for this Story

Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
B Boy 9/13/2013 8:46:11 AM Report

With all the devastation many Soo families have faced I'm surprised there hasn't been a release or a word from our Mayor. Just a general press release from the city.
wakeup 9/13/2013 9:02:36 AM Report

No word from the mayor because she doesnt give a crap, she is a trained pupet, years of practise ignoreing the people from her last position, while studying the proper way to deliver the usual political excuses for failed care of this city' s people as a whole, not just catered to the well off, but dont worry the over paid office staff will prepare something soon, unlike taking months to address a simple ramp aplication for a disabled person ,as the avery joke an the rich took presidence over a disabled persons application for a ramp instalation, as fancy homes that do nothing for anyone matter more then a disabled person being able to enter an exit their home
Wisenheimer 9/13/2013 9:05:14 AM Report

Haven't had a real Mayor since John Rowswell passed.
myad 9/13/2013 9:24:17 AM Report

I would like to see captions on the photos.
dandrew61 9/13/2013 10:12:36 AM Report

If you've ever been to Kingsman (Hiawatha) park you don't need captions on these photos. Although I admit I've never seen the water that high in 50 years.
Sera 9/13/2013 10:32:51 AM Report

I have been going to Hiawatha my whole life and never seen it like this. The sound and the sight left my mouth open!! The mist coming off the water left me soaked! Breathtaking!!! There is so much water coming down it has made its way down another path as you can see in one of the pictures. We used to jump off crystal falls into a semi calm pool of water and up to last year walk up the middle of the now raging river with my daughter!
The main paths to Mini haha falls are flooded so I trekked my way through the bush to get to it and was awed. As you can see there was no way I could cross the bridge and if you look carefully you can see a picnic table in the débris! I videod much of this and then resumed picture taking on a log that was pushing its way through the fence!!! So glad I got to experience this!
opinionated 9/13/2013 11:24:37 AM Report

THATS THE RAIL WASHOUT ????? Holy crap! That's pretty serious.
Alken 9/13/2013 12:55:50 PM Report

I've been driving past the ACR overpass near 5th line every day since the floods and wondered what was going on with all the parked cars (a dozen or more), police cars, railway cars on the over pass, etc. The picture at the top of this story was the first news, if it can be called that, of what it was all about. The ACR sevice must have been seriously affected but nothing in the media about it. Does anyone have any solid information about what happened? (Don't just tell me there was a washout, I figured that out myself; I'd like details).
rlmac 9/13/2013 1:24:20 PM Report

Hope everyone will remember our Mayor's lack of leadership/ encouragement/ support/participation, etc. when election time comes! Not surprised at all!
rcssm69 9/13/2013 2:13:04 PM Report

Not sure what kind of information you're looking for? The bridge was indeed washed out! That bridge is very old dating back to at least the early 1900's!
Alken 9/13/2013 2:45:05 PM Report

Thanks, that was a big help.
IB-fine 9/13/2013 3:20:37 PM Report

So these pictures are at Hiawatha/Kinsman park?
I heard from friends there was also a landside/flood in Heyden near the tracks and there was a massive amount of workmen working on it to make sure the rail line was safe.
Anything on that?
Where were the pictures taken with the metal bars/barricade taken?
Would be nice if someone at SooToday put locations on the pictures, then we wouldn't have to ask dumb questions!

Agree the mayor should have said something about the flooding and hard work done by the workers over the last few days. A thank you would be nice!
rcssm69 9/13/2013 4:11:22 PM Report

...are you looking to lay blame???
...are you just posting for kicks and giggles???
...are you retarded???
rcssm69 9/13/2013 4:12:49 PM Report

And YES this CAN be called news! This is actually VERY important news!!!
Sera 9/13/2013 5:10:29 PM Report

@ IB

Are you talking about the picture with the métal bars nd the falls with débris and a picnic table stuck there?

If so, that would be the Mini Haha falls at Hiawatha park.
It was awesome! I couldnt believe it when I saw it, hence the picture!

All my pictures were from Hiawatha.
Sera 9/13/2013 5:13:14 PM Report

The picture of the train tracks is amazing!! I cannot believe that all that solid rock got moved by water!!!
Nature is crazy!!!
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