Ice jams choke flow of water through N.B. rivers as flood watch continues

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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PERTH-ANDOVER, N.B. - Ice jams at various points along New Brunswick's network of rivers have led to some flooding and evacuations, but the level of damage so far has been relatively light.
In northern New Brunswick, an ice jam was holding back the St. John River at Sainte-Anne-de-Madawaska on Tuesday, but water levels were stable because the ice was not covering the full width of the river.
About 130 kilometres downstream, another jam appeared Tuesday in Woodstock. Only one home was reported flooded there.
Earlier in the day, flood waters that forced the overnight evacuation of more than 200 people from Perth-Andover in western New Brunswick quickly receded as an ice jam at the town's main bridge broke up.
Water levels dropped by almost four metres as the ice moved along.
Dan Dionne, the town's chief administrative officer, said about 30 homes in the area had water-logged basements.
''The water has declined dramatically,'' he said in an interview.
He said the sudden flood did not cause serious damage, unlike in 1993 when the swollen river caused $4 million in damage. More than 300 were forced from their homes back then.
Karl Wilmot, co-ordinator for New Brunswick's River Watch 2009, said ice that clogged the St. John River at Hartland, about 50 kilometres south of Perth-Andover, also broke free early Tuesday.
Part of Highway 105 at Hartland was temporarily closed and six families were voluntarily evacuated.
Meanwhile, emergency officials were keeping an eye on the Nashwaak River, which flows into the St. John River near Fredericton.
A jam at Stanely was short-lived, but the ice later clogged the river downstream at Nashwaak Bridge. The three-kilometre ice jam pushed up water levels and took a chunk out of Route 107, forcing police to close the road.
Six people were evacuated from the nearby homes.
Other ice jams were reported farther downstream at Durham Bridge and Marysville, causing minor flooding.
On the Southwest Miramichi River, ice jams led to the evacuation of two homes in Hayesville. The river was also choked by ice at Priceville.

Geographic location: New Brunswick, Woodstock, Nashwaak River Fredericton Nashwaak Bridge Durham Bridge Marysville Miramichi River Hayesville

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