Heavy rainfall

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Current situation

As of Wednesday, July 10:

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for potential heavy rainfall from the remnants of the tropical storm Beryl.

Be alert for rainfall warnings and weather changes in your area. Environment Canada issues a heavy rainfall warning when at least 50 mm of rain is expected within one hour. Signs that a storm is approaching include large, dark clouds, strong winds and hail.

If you receive a rainfall warning or spot the signs of an approaching storm, seek shelter indoors or go to higher ground. Be prepared for localized flooding and avoid walking or driving through flooded areas.

Check back here, the City's Facebook and Twitter feeds, or local news media for the latest information.

Be prepared

How to prevent basement flooding

Follow some these recommended steps to reduce the risk of basement flooding: 

  • Seal window wells and cracks in floors, walls and the foundation.
  • Slope ground away from the foundation to allow rainwater to flow away from the home.
  • Direct downspouts from eaves troughs away from the foundation (minimum of 1.2 metres) or to a rain barrel.
  • Disconnect downspouts from the sewer system or foundation drains.
  • Don't put grass clipping, leaves, or other debris on the streets as they can plug the drains and prevent proper drainage, particularly during heavy rainfalls. Plugged drains cause water to build up on the street, increasing your risk of basement flooding.
  • Ensure foundation drains direct water to the storm sewer or sump pump. Foundation drains should not be connected to the sanitary sewer.
  • Ensure the sump pump is connected to the storm sewer or discharges to the ground at least 1.2 metres from the foundation.

Additional resource:

What if there is a power outage?

Battery-operated (or crank) radios are an important tool for you during a power outage.

The City shares critical information and public service announcements with our local news media so that they can include it in their news coverage.

If there is a power outage and you can’t access information online, tune into your local news radio channel for the latest information. You can also access information in your local daily or community newspaper.

Look out for each other

During emergencies, you can act as a vital line for those who need assistance or important information. Have a conversation now with neighbours, friends and family members about how to stay in touch with each other in the event of an emergency.

Plan to check in on neighbours, friends and family members – especially those who are vulnerable – to see if they need assistance and update them with the latest information and instructions.

Equipment to have on hand

Check your emergency preparedness kit to make sure it’s stocked with:

  • Battery or crank powered radio
  • Fresh batteries
  • Prepaid phone card
  • Mobile phone charger
  • Landline telephone that does not require electricity

Additional resources:

For more information about:

Who to call

  • Call 2-1-1 for information on food banks, free meals, health care, and other social services; you can also get assistance through the 2-1-1 website; this is a provincial service 

  • Call 3-1-1 for information on emergency housing and financial assistance; you can also get assistance through the 3-1-1 website; this is a City service 

  • Call 9-1-1 for a life-threatening emergency, fire or crime in progress; to contact the Ottawa Police Service for non-emergencies call 613-236-1222. 

  • Hydro Ottawa: 613-738-6400, hydroottawa.com 

  • Hydro One: 1-888-664-9376, hydroone.com 

  • Enbridge: 1-877-362-7434, enbridgegas.com

  • Ministry of Labour, Health and Safety: 1-877-202-0008

Damaged residences

Survey your home to identify any hazardous conditions, such as: 

  • Fires 
  • Gas leaks 
  • Electrical shorts 
  • Broken water lines 
  • Any spilled flammable or hazardous materials 

If your home or building shows any sign of partial or full collapse, or a fire, evacuate the premises immediately.  Be aware of any broken glass. 

Utilities – gas, hydro and water 

  • If you smell gas in your home or building, evacuate immediately. 
  • Stay away from and do not attempt moving any downed electrical wiring. 
  • Stay away from any surface touching any downed electrical wiring – especially water. 
  • Turn water intake valve for broken water pipes and leaks. 
  • If power is out, avoid any injury and fire by  
    • Turning the thermostat(s) down to minimum 
    • Unplug all appliances, electronic equipment and tools to prevent injury, damage to equipment and fire. 
  • Power can be restored more easily when the system is not overloaded. 
  • Use flashlights if possible. Candles can cause fire when knocked over or in contact with any possible gas leaks. 
  • Avoid generating any carbon monoxide. Do not use any charcoal cooking devices or fuel-driven generators indoors – including garages.     
  • If you’re in an office or apartment building, do not use the elevators. 

Food and water supplies  

  • Any foods in your refrigerator can be used up to four hours after a power failure.
  • Any foods in your freezer can be used up to two days after a power failure. 
  • It’s recommended to eat canned and bottled juices, and stored or bottled water, or water currently in your hot water tank. 
  • Stay posted for any boil water warnings and instructions on how to purify the drinking water.