Netizen 24 NGA: Evacuations ordered in Musquash, NB, due to high water levels at nearby dam

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Evacuations ordered in Musquash, NB, due to high water levels at nearby dam

Advertisment cbc masthead logo New Brunswick LIVE NB More Streams CBC Radio One Listen Live host picture Updated Evacuations ordered in Musquash, N.B., due to high water levels at nearby dam

Heavy rain and flooding caused water levels to rise at the East Branch dam

CBC News Posted: Jan 14, 2018 12:12 AM AT Last Updated: Jan 14, 2018 10:41 AM AT

High water levels have forced some residents in Musquash out of their homes as local EMO officials keep an eye on a dam upstream.

High water levels have forced some residents in Musquash out of their homes as local EMO officials keep an eye on a dam upstream. (Matthew Bingley/CBC)

More than 100 people in the small community of Musquash, N.B., are staying in a hotel or with family after the East Branch dam exceeded safe levels due to flooding in the area.

Levels were very high Saturday and as a result, residents in the Thompson subdivision below the dam had to leave their homes as a safety precaution, said Robert Duguay, director of communications with New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization.

He said the dam doesn't appear to be damaged and crews are back this morning to monitor the water levels.

The weather forecast for Sunday should make things easier, Duguay said.

"What changed the situation is the fact that Environment Canada removed all the warnings about freezing rain so with that change, that makes the situation less dramatic," he said.

"We were very concerned that we could have even more power outages, and maybe some damage to infrastructure with the freezing rain.&qu ot;

The dam is fed by two lakes and there are concerns that if there is a break, water could either flood homes or wash out the bridge on the highway.

Police went door to door

Police and firefighters went door to door around 8 p.m. on Saturday asking people to pack up and leave their homes.

More than 110 people ended up at the Carleton Community Centre in Saint John, about 30 minutes away from Musquash, where the Red Cross set up a reception centre.

Allie Murchison, disaster management co-ordinator with the Red Cross, said the organization put 87 people in a hotel in Saint John and the rest stayed with family and friends.

Musquash District Fire Chief Mike Mersereau couldn't say last night how long people will be out of their homes, but said were being told to pack for 48 hours.

Murchison said people came prepared and the Red Cross hasn't had to provide clothing or other essentials.

"There& #039;s a lot of resiliency and planning at the personal level. A lot of families take that extra precaution of having a go-bag ready at their door should anything happen because growing up and living next to bodies of water, you never know what they're going to do," she said.

Red Cross on standby

The Red Cross is on standby in Moncton and Saint John, said Murchison.

There was also a voluntary evacuation for Sussex, but Murchison said people stayed in their homes for the most part, and a reception centre set up by the Red Cross was eventually closed when no one showed up.

The Red Cross is encouraging anyone who needs assistance to call the Red Cross at 1-800-222-9597.

  • Flooding widespread throughout New Brunswick after weekend storm

Much of the province is experiencing flooding after some areas received as much as 125 mm of rain on Friday and Saturday. There was widespread damage to roads and some bridges due to the rising water.

"It would be nice if everyone could go home today but we don't know, with all the rain that we accumulated, when people will be getting back to their homes," said Murchison. "We hope it's before the Monday work day but if need be, we will be continuing on into this work week."

Thompson subdivision

Safety vehicles blocked the entrance to the subdivision Sunday morning. (Matthew Bingley/CBC)

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