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Military Called in to Help Battle Rising Assiniboine River

May 8, 2011 7:24 PM | News

The Canadian military will help hold back the Assiniboine River from Portage la Prairie to Headingley.

About 200 soldiers, including reservists, could be on the job as early as Monday morning to assist in sandbagging. During a news conference Sunday evening, Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger said he spoke to Prime Minister Stephen Harper to enlist the help of the military.

Earlier in the day, Selinger toured Brandon with Mayor Shari Decter Hirst and Brandon East MLA Drew Caldwell.


The Assiniboine has reached record levels in Brandon, forcing the city to declare a state of local emergency. The declaration gives city officials the power to evacuate large areas of the city, and police to remove any sightseers who are getting in the way of those building up earth dikes.

The “super sandbags” along 18th Street are currently being built up and additional sandbags are being brought in to secure the lower areas of the dike. On First Street, Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation has closed the southbound lanes for two kilometres south of Kirkcaldy Drive.

Officials are scrambling in the Wheat City to prepare for several days of unwanted rain.

River levels on Sunday at the First Street Bridge were 1,182.17 feet — up 1.18 feet since Saturday.

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