Stay safe on the ice!

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from the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority 

Frozen lakes and rivers support many of our favourite winter activities, but safety must always come first. Ice thickness is unpredictable and can change quickly. Falling into open water can result in hypothermia or drowning. Stay safe by regularly testing ice thickness, staying away from areas with flowing water, reminding children of the dangers of playing on or near the ice and keeping pets on leash near frozen waterbodies.

Please note the RVCA does not monitor or maintain ice conditions anywhere in the watershed, including at its 11 public conservation areas. The RVCA does not allow or encourage skating at any of its properties.

Please fish your huts off the ice!

As the weather warms, plan ahead to remove any fishing huts, rink materials, garbage and other equipment you’ve left on the ice before it gets too thin. Letting these materials go down with the ice can pollute our rivers and lakes, be toxic for fish and wildlife and create hazards for boaters and swimmers in the spring. It is an offence under the Public Lands Act to leave your ice hut out after ice break up, even if that occurs before the local removal deadline of March 15. Protect and respect the river that has kept you going through these long winter months!

Get ready for flood season

Dreaming of spring? Prepare for it, too! The spring freshet is just around the corner, and RVCA staff are using stream gauges, weather stations, snowpack measurements, meteorological forecasts and computer models to prepare. As the spring melt begins, staff can use the data collected to determine the potential for flooding. Residents can monitor real-time water levels, access neighbourhood-level flood maps and more at www.RVCA.ca/watershed-conditions.

Should flooding occur, the first response is up to you! As a property owner, you need an emergency plan to minimize flood-related property damages. While our flood forecasting and warning program is responsible for providing timely, accurate flood predictions, your municipality is responsible for emergency response in the event of severe flooding. Now is the time to explore your municipality’s website, get to know its emergency preparedness plan and dig out your local emergency phone numbers.

For up-to-date information on local watershed conditions, subscribe to RVCA’s flood forecasting and warning emails at www.rvca.ca — look for “Get RVCA News.”

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