Athabasca River near Fort McMurray under Ice Jam Watch

River Ice Advisory has upgraded the Athabasca River near Fort McMurray to an Ice Jam Watch.

Conditions have become favourable for the formation of ice jams which could cause elevated water levels and possible low-lying flooding in Fort McMurray.

A 1–2-hour ice run has passed the Above House River monitoring station roughly 150 km upstream of Fort McMurray Thursday morning.

The ice run is considered moderate in size and could raise water levels by nearly 3. 75 m.

River Ice Advisory has said there is limited intact ice cover between House River and Fort McMurray.

This means the ice run could stop against the intact ice in Fort McMurray causing an ice jam and raising water levels quickly.

Intact ice on the Athabasca River near Fort McMurray

If the ice run is not stopped further upstream, it could arrive in Fort McMurray by 8:00 pm Thursday evening according to Alberta Environment and Parks.

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