Sun. Feb 25th, 2024

« Plan your Holidays outside’, says the mayor of Chute-Saint-Philippe

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The Quebec Ministry of the Environment detected an anomaly during an inspection of the Morier dike of the Kiamika reservoir, which led to the evacuation of residents of Chute-Saint-Philippe and Lac-des-Écorces in Hautes -Laurentides.

  • Anne Marie Lecomte (View profile)Anne Marie Lecomte

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The evacuation of 1,900 residents of the Hautes-Laurentides due to the erosion of a dike on the Kiamika dam will continue at least until December 17. Police have increased security in the evacuated area to prevent mischief.

I advised my parents to plan the holidays at my brothers' house, outside the region, said Normand St-Amour, mayor of Chute-Saint-Philippe, on ICI RDI on Thursday. This is what I tell everyone, and if we have the good news that we can come back, we will all be happy. But…

Chute-Saint-Philippe, 28 km northeast of Mont-Laurier, is one of the two municipalities affected by the evacuations urgently imposed last Sunday evening by public security, the second being Lac-des-Écorces located 11 km west of Mont-Laurier. These are some waterfront areas of these cities.

People know they won't go home by December 17th if all goes well, if they don't ;There is no delay in the work, and the analyzes are proceeding as planned, said Mr. St-Amour.

December 17 is the date set Wednesday by the Quebec Ministry of Public Security, which maintained the preventive evacuation notice launched last Sunday in certain waterfront areas of the affected municipalities. It took everyone by surprise, the mayor too, admitted Normand St-Amour, speaking of the shock he himself suffered when he learned what hit his city.

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When the firefighters knocked on their door, the residents had to evacuate virtually immediately. Since then, the Sûreté du Québec (SQ) has been monitoring deserted homes.

During the night from Sunday to Monday, they arrested a man whose moving van had gotten stuck in Chute-Saint-Philippe. Footprints around several residences and a residential garage tipped them off, and they eventually located and arrested the suspect in a wooded area.

The man appeared at the Mont-Laurier courthouse on Wednesday to answer charges of vehicle theft, possession of burglary tools, entry breaking and entering and failing to comply with probation conditions.

The SQ has mobilized additional personnel, i.e. several dozen police officers, some of whom come from Outaouais or Drummondville, said Éric Cadotte, spokesperson for the SQ.

The Ministry of the Environment inspects the Morier dike daily, which presents internal erosion which requires work to ensure the integrity of the dam, we can read on the government website of Quebec.

It's stable, said Martin Ferland, engineer at the General Directorate of Dams, at a press briefing on Wednesday. No new influx of water at the downstream foot of the dike and stability at the piezometric level (measurement of depth of the surface of the groundwater table).

The authorities will take stock again this afternoon. Today, also, the installation of a draining mat is planned. Subsequently, a mast will be installed on the dry side of the dike, then the experts will begin to stabilize their work.

The Kiamika dam, on the edge of which The Morier dike is located, has a height of 16 meters and a retention capacity of 382 million cubic meters, the equivalent of more than 100,000 Olympic swimming pools.

It’s huge, says the mayor of Chute-Saint-Philippe, who still seems reassured because we have secured the human.

Normand St-Amour is amazed at the support provided to the affected municipalities and asks evacuated citizens to register at the sports center, at Mont-Laurier, because financial assistance will be provided to them under a government program (New window).

For If you have any questions regarding the evacuation, Urgence Québec invites citizens to call 819 585-3397.

For all the details regarding the evacuation, Urgence Québec invites citizens to call 819 585-3397. alert, visit the government Public Safety website (New window)

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