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Wednesday , 3 March 2021
Rising water levels as seen from the remaining overpass under threat of washout. Image credit: Liz Jacknife.

Elizabeth Metis Settlement evacuates 130 families as floodwaters threaten entryways

Rising water levels as seen from Range Road 610, which is under threat of washout. Image credit: Liz Jacknife. 

Elizabeth Metis Settlement declared a state of local emergency late Monday afternoon and 130 families have been moved into hotels as rising water levels threaten to washout entryways into the community.

Resident members living in the hamlet, southeast, southwest and south of Red Springs Creek on Main Drive evacuated Monday evening to two hotels 36 kilometres away in Cold Lake.

Local emergency services are consistently monitoring the situation, said Irene Zimmer in a written statement to Lakeland Connect, chairperson of Elizabeth Metis Settlement, as flooding from roughly 50 millimetres of rain on Sunday washed out one of two available exits.

“The only exit out of Elizabeth [Main Drive Creek Road] is now in a serious state of floodwaters breaching the road. If this happens approximately three-quarters of the community population will be cut off from access including emergency services,” said Zimmer.

Rising water levels in Elizabeth Metis Settlement. Image credit: Liz Jacknife.

“Currently all evacuees–approximately 130 families–are being put in hotels in Cold Lake. Our local emergency services are consistently monitoring the situation.

“Kudos to our staff and volunteers who are working tirelessly to ensure that our members and families are being looked after,” said Zimmer.

It is unknown how long evacuees will be away from their homes.

Weather forecasts are saying that the rain could be over for the next few days.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.