Flood update: Gatineau is being proactive and getting preparations underway for restoration
Gatineau, May 8, 2023.
– Gatineau is starting preparations for a gradual restoration that could begin in the next few days. That being said, we must be careful, and shoreline property owners must remain vigilant and keep all protective walls in place until further notice. In addition, Gatineau is doing everything it can to reopen streets as soon as conditions allow to do so safely. Crews are at the ready and actively engaged in the process.
It should be noted that even if water levels gradually fall, several streets may remain closed or open to local traffic only until they are back in shape. Before reopening a street, municipal crews must check a number of things, which could take several days. Given that roads have been flooded for so long, there may be damage to their foundations. Also, in order to start their checks, crews have to wait until the pavement is completely dry, which may take several more days. Gatineau is calling on residents to be patient and understanding, as these precautions are aimed at ensuring their safety.
Municipal measures while waters recede
|●||At this point, 44 streets are closed.|
|●||The impact of flooding on a pavement is similar to that of a thaw. Full recovery can take several weeks.|
|●||Water saturation of a road can lead to loss of weight-bearing capacity. There can be 2 to 15 times more damage. Some roads will have to be repaired before they can be reopened.|
|●||As soon as the water has receded, Gatineau goes through the following steps before opening a street: |
- checking every street, including for erosion to the pavement and its condition;
- conducting capacity tests;
- cleaning up debris;
- reopening the street and updating the map; and
- as soon as a street is reopened, the fire department visits the homes and informs residents of the steps to follow before their electricity or gas can once again be turned on.
|●||The goal is to reopen streets as quickly as possible while ensuring the safety of residents.|
|●||It may take several weeks to reopen all streets, particularly those running along a river.|
|●||Water levels are continuing to drop slightly, and will remain high for another week or two. However, they could rise again in the event of heavy rainfall.|
|●||To date, 735 people have registered with Ville de Gatineau. Of those, 133 are in the care of the Red Cross and are being housed in hotels.|
|●||All shoreline property owners whose natural gas meters have been shut off for safety reasons can contact Gazifère directly at gazifere.com or 819-771-8321, option 2.|
|●||Certain sandbag distribution sites will be closed as of tomorrow, but you can rest assured that other sites will have enough bags for all shoreline property owners. Consult the interactive map at gatineau.ca/crue to find out more about road conditions, sandbag distribution sites, parking available to shoreline property owners, and areas that could be affected.|
|●||“As you can see, Gatineau is being proactive and already starting preparations for restoration, even though the situation remains precarious. As water levels drop, we understand that shoreline property owners are eager to return to normal life and be able to get around freely. However, I ask you for patience, because certain checks remain to be done before streets can be reopened. Gatineau's priority is first and foremost to ensure the public's safety, and every step will be carried out accordingly,” indicated Gatineau Mayor France Bélisle.|