Flood Prevention Program
BackgroundOur city receives about 345 millimetres (14 inches) of rain a year, most of which falls from May to October. Though this is not a huge amount of precipitation, our summer storms tend to drop large amounts of rain over short periods of time. During major rainstorms the sheer volume of water can back up drainage systems and flood basements.
ProgramDrainage Planning and Engineering sponsors a Flood Prevention Program to equip homeowners with the information and knowledge to make drainage improvements.
GoalsThe Flood Prevention Program is intended to meet 2 objectives:
- To reduce risk of basement flooding due to sewer backup during rainfall events.
- To reduce wet weather flows in the sanitary sewer system.
Basement Flooding Complaint Procedures
There are two complaint procedures established:
- Immediate Complaint Procedure
This procedure is to be used when reports of rainfall related sanitary sewer backup are received within 2 weeks of a specific rainfall event. Complaints must be registered by calling 311 within 2 weeks of the specific rainfall event.
Sanitary sewer backup must be the main source of flooding in order to get the funding approved for flood proofing measures.
- Delayed Complaint Procedure
This procedure is to be used when reports of rainfall related sanitary sewer backup are received later than 2 weeks after a specific rainfall event. Drainage Planning and Engineering may notify the public of a flooding response program relative to a specific rainfall event.
Complaints must be registered by calling 311 in order to be evaluated for possible program subsidy.
Four Key Messages
Downspouts should extend at least 1.8 metres (6 feet) from your basement wall and drain away from the house toward a street or back lane.
- Lot Grading
Land should slope outward from the foundation of the house for a minimum of 1.8 metres (6 feet).
- Flood-proofing Devices
Individual and neighbourhood drainage systems prone to flooding should have a flood-proofing device, such as a sump pump or backwater valve, installed to keep rainwater and sewage from backing up into basements.
- Plumbing Fixtures
A qualified plumber should inspect all plumbing fixtures and flood-proofing devices regularly to make sure they are in good conditions.
For homeowners who have experienced basement flooding or whose dwellings were built before 1989, Drainage Planning and Engineering has a subsidy program to assist homeowners financially to install a backwater valve. For more information, refer to the Backwater Valve Subsidy Program.
For More Information
Backwater Valve Program
5th Floor, Century Place
24-hour Drainage and Sewer Trouble Hotline