Flood Control on the Thames River
The Thames River approaches London with two branches, the north and south branches, and these branches meet at the Forks, which is virtually the centre of the City of London.
In 1937, serious flooding occurred in central-west London and since that time, some concrete breakwaters and Fanshawe Dam have been constructed. The operation of all flood control structures on the Thames River falls under the jurisdiction of the Conservation Authorities Branch of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.
Over the past years, the Environmental & Engineering Services Department has liaised many times with the province and in recent years with the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority to minimize the threat of flooding to the City of London.
The Upper Thames River Conservation Authority has developed a Flood Warning System.. Since the flooding in 1937 and 1947, no serious flooding has occurred.
The threat of serious flooding, however, still remains should certain weather conditions combine with snow in the watersheds or exceptional heavy rainfall occur at any time of the year.
The Environmental & Engineering Services Department is the authority responsible in the City of London for the preparation of the Flood Plan and liaison with the Conservation Authority Branch.
The Upper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA) has a Flood Warning System which is provided to Municipal Flood Coordinators. The UTRCA issues information bulletins as Advisories or Warnings. An Advisory bulletin is an update of general conditions and a Warning is more specific and refers to expected flooding and when possible refers to crest heights and arrival times.
TheUpper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA) collaborates with all watershed municipalities to protect life and property from flood and erosion.
The UTRCA monitors stream flow and meteorologic data throughout the watershed as part of it's Flood Control Program. At most stream gauge locations real-time data are recorded at least hourly for water level, rainfall, and air temperature. Information is posted daily on their website during low flow periods, and more frequently during floods.
They presently monitor water levels and stream flow at 18 locations, rainfall at 16 locations and reservoir levels at 5 locations in the Upper Thames basin. Other meteorological data such as air temperature, wind speed, direction, and solar radiation, is also gathered at some locations.
The information provided by the monitoring system supports UTRCA flood management and low flow response. Of interest to their park's recreation users are water levels and discharges at flood control and flow augmentation structures at Fanshawe, Pittock, and Wildwood Dams.
The UTRCA and the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority (LTVCA) are working towards providing information for the whole Thames River watershed.
For further information contact:
Upper Thames River Conservation Authority
1424 Clarke Rd.