An emergency report contained in the Champlain Township regular meeting agenda summed up the efforts of Champlain Township during the recent flood situation in the municipality.

Community Emergency Management Coordinator Dan Holmes points out that while the water level did not reach that of 2017 levels, there was concern that water levels would reach or exceed the 2017 levels.

According to Holmes, 60 homes were surveyed by firefighters. Twenty-seven homes were sandbagged and five homes suffered some form of damage.

Support came from a small group of volunteers plus a contingent from the North Glengarry Fire Services. Firefighters in L’Orignal were assisted by firefighters from the Vankleek Hill fire station. On Saturday, April 20, volunteers spent the morning sandbagging; volunteers included almost the entire council, most department heads, firefighters, roads and recreation staff and community volunteers.

The Town of Hawkesbury offered use of the complex to affected residents for showers, free wi-fi, etc.

Champlain Township purchased four truckloads of 7,300 filled sandbags from a company in St-Isidore and another 5,500 sandbags were filled by hand. Holmes notes that Hawks Transport of Alfred delivered the four truckloads of the factory-filled sandbags at no cost.

Champlain Township works with a number of agencies as part of the Municipal Emergency Control Group (MECG). Any member of the MECG wanting to initiate the Emergency Notification System must first contact and obtain the concurrence of either the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) or the Community Emergency Management Coordinator (CEMC). In this case, a state of emergency was not declared.

Planning began in early March in anticipation of rising water levels, with the CEMC attending the South Nation Conservation Authority’s annual flood forecasting conference. While the CEMC was involved in the early stages, discussions included determining when the Municipal Emergency Control Group would be contacted.

At press time, no actual costs associated with the flood were available.