It may be sunny and warm today but that weather won't last forever. Both the Government of Ontario and Environment Canada have issued weather statements as the weekend weather in Ontario prompts flood warnings across the province. The warnings come as heavy rainfall is promised in the forecast.
Currently, Environment Canada has special weather statements in place for 18 different regions in Southern Ontario, warning of significant rainfall. For example, in the warning for the City of Ottawa, Environment Canada says "total rainfall amounts of 20 to 40 mm are possible. The ground is still at least partially frozen over much of Eastern Ontario. As a result, it will have a limited ability to absorb this rainfall."
Since the ground will be unable to absorb the water it will just start pooling on top of the ground. While Environment Canada warns that "localized ponding in low-lying areas and on roads is possible," the province has taken it one step further.
Across all of Southern Ontario, there is a provincially issued flood watch in place. In their warning, the Ministry of Natural Resources states that a Texas low pressure system will bring up to 40 mm of rain in some places.
This mixed with the fact that streams and rivers in Ontario are already at elevated levels due to melting causes a major flood risk. The province specifically names the river run-off and also ice jams as a cause for concern this weekend.
The only good news here is that we get to enjoy some calm before the storm. In many parts of Southern Ontario, they are enjoying lots of sunshine and warm temperatures before the rain moves in. Don't get too comfortable though, the rain is coming.
According to the forecast for Toronto, the rain, and even some snowfall starts on Sunday morning, around 9 AM EST to be exact, when there is an 80% chance of precipitation. That rain is expected to last 24 hours, finally easing up on Monday around 9 AM.
Both Environment Canada and the Ontario Government recommend following local forecasts and weather updates tomorrow as this system moves in. Currently the warnings are only set at "flood watch level" meaning their is a potential for flooding but it is possible this could get upgraded to an official "flood warning" level as the rain falls tomorrow.
Disclaimer: Cover photo used for illustrative purposes only.