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Making Waves

The Danger Of The Spring Runoff

Ross

By Ross Kentner

The tragic loss of a young child to fast water near Orangeville is a sober reminder of the power of nature and the annual danger of the spring runoff.  Driving at night, the child's mother missed a road closure and her van was swept into the Grand River.  She was able to exit the van but at the last moment the three year old was ripped from her arms by the raging water.  

While spring may not be right around the corner last week's combination of high temperatures and heavy rain created runoff conditions.  The city of Chatham saw serious flooding and the collapse of a bridge.  Emergencies were declared in a number of communities.  The main street bridge in Chelsey was damaged beyond repair.  

Everywhere across Southern Ontario rivers and creeks are running high and fast.  But that's not the only danger.  Rapid snow melt means that ditches can conceal deep water along many roads and highways...hazards for drivers and pedestrians, especially children who are naturally attracted to water.  Parents need to remind children that spring type weather can make water courses treacherous.

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