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Roads reopen in Middlesex County after heavy rain and flooding

All roads in Middlesex County have been reopened after heavy rain caused significant flooding Wednesday.

The County declared a state of emergency Wednesday night after many roads became submerged in water and were in danger of washouts.

At least 100 mm of rain fell in the London area in the last 48 hours.

Although all roads have been reopened, the County continues to urge the public to use caution while travelling due to a number of shoulder washouts along highways.

Flooding on Karen Laughton’s property in Apen. (Submitted by Karen Laughton)

Road crews will be working today to address the damage caused, Middlesex County said in a statement.

Joe Kalita, who lives in Glencoe, says that the flooding affected a lot of his neighbours but he says he “was well prepared this time.” 

“It was just pooling everywhere: front yard, backyard, all over the place,” says Kalita. “I had two, two inch submersible pumps going, an extra sump pump going and a one inch gas pump going and I was losing the battle with Mother Nature.”

The flooding inside his home was minimal but he believes it would have been worse had he not been there himself, being as prepared as he was.

He explained that the storm had picked up strength at approximately 3 p.m. yesterday, and although it has since subsided he says that yesterday did indeed feel like a “state of emergency.”

In London, several roads were closed overnight because of flooding, including Oxford Street between Beaverbrook Avenue and Proudfoot Lane, and Pine Street between Ash St. and Hume St. But those roads have since been reopened.

Dingman Drive between Highbury Avenue South and Old Victoria Road and Sunningdale Road east of Highbury Avenue are closed, and traffic has been slowed in the northbound lane of Highbury Avenue approaching Sunningdale.

The Upper Thames River Conservation Authority says much of the North Thames River watershed, including the City of London, has received more than 100 mm of rain. The South Thames has received about 75 mm.

“Parents are encouraged to keep their children and pets away from all creeks, rivers and water bodies.”​​​​– Upper Thames River Conservation Authority

In a statement, the UTRCA said while much of the earlier rain soaked into the ground, more runoff is now being generated as the soil becomes saturated.

Ditches, creeks and streams have been been rising and many have reached “bank full conditions” or spilled their banks.

“Some low lying areas and parklands are being inundated, such as the St. Marys Flats, and Harris and Gibbons Parks in London,” a statement said.

The UTRCA expects watercourses to begin peaking early Thursday morning in upstream areas. It said peaks will progress downstream until Thursday evening. The Thames River is expected to remain elevated into the weekend.

Officials are reminding the public to exercise extreme caution and stay away from all watercourses. 

Flooding found on Joe Kalita’s street in Glencoe. (James Chaarani/CBC)

“Do not drive through any flooded roadways or walk into flooded areas. Parents are encouraged to keep their children and pets away from all creeks, rivers and water bodies,” the statement said.

Environment Canada said the rain was due to a cold front and a moisture-laden low pressure system from the American Mid-west.

Rainfall warnings which had been in effect throughout the night have now been cancelled.


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