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Fort William declares emergency over flooding

Thursday May 23, 2013
Fort William Chief Georgann Morriseau.

Fort William First Nation declared a state of emergency due to flooding on May 20.

Chief Georgann Morriseau declared the emergency when it was determined that 40 to 60 homes were at risk of flooding.

About 30 families were evacuated into Thunder Bay on May 20, as either their homes were at risk of flooding or they would have been cut off from washed out roads.

The First Nation also closed down all businesses on the reserve and advised residents to limit water use until assessments of the water system and lagoon could be completed.

Volunteers were going door to door to inform residents of the situation and asking for assistance from the First Nations members.

Over 50 millimeters of rain fell on May 19, and up to 70 millimeters were expected on the following days.

The Lakehead Region Conservation Authority also issued a flood watch warning for Thunder Bay as river levels rose to dangerous levels.

The flooding warnings come almost exactly one year since Thunder Bay and Fort William First Nation dealt with massive flooding that forced thousands of people from their homes and caused lasting damage to entire neighbourhoods in the city.

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