‘Not worried’: City, residents of Île Bizard say they’re prepared if waters flood their streets

"I’m willing to accept whatever nature gives me," says Jocelyne St-Maurice, living on the waterfront on Montreal's Ile Bizard. The area on high alert for flooding, but the borough says they're prepared for the worst. Alyssia Rubertucci reports.

By News Staff

Jocelyne St-Maurice bought her home 15 years ago on Île-Bizard’s waterfront, knowing it was a flood zone.

“I’m not worried,” she said. “No human can fight nature, so I’m willing to accept whatever nature gives me.”

She had water flood her backyard in 2017 and 2019 and this year, as Montreal remains on high alert with rising water levels, she says she’s prepared for whatever might happen next.

“I have sump pump in the garage with all the wires and everything, that’s running full time,” she said. “So naturally, I am always worried if the electricity goes off, I have to have a generator.”

In 2017, although her home’s crawl space was flooded, she was one of the few with electricity.

Jocelyne Maurice’s backyard on May 10, 2017.

“I used to take a canoe to go up the street to go to the IGA to get food and beverages for the three men that used to work 24 hours a day filling up the pumps.”

Even though the city is on flood watch, authorities urge residents not to panic.

“We’re not getting a 2019 this year,” said Île-Bizard–Sainte-Geneviève borough mayor, Stéphane Côté. |We’re still in prevention, but we’re ready.”


At Park Terrasse Sacré-Coeur Thursday, city workers reinforced the temporary dyke that they installed.

“They’re fortifying the dam because if it goes south, we don’t want to go there,” the mayor said. “It’s going to be big, probably six, seven feet.”

The wall made up of hundreds of sandbags may soon be extended onto St-Maurice’s property to keep the Rivières des Prairies from overflowing.

“The water will go through me to all the streets, so it has to be eventually blocked here too.”

A 30 per cent chance of showers forecasted for Saturday in Montreal and periods of rain Sunday and Monday, many in the borough are still hopeful.

“It’s going to rise a little bit there, but so far, so good,” said Côté. “I plan 48 hours ahead for what’s coming.”

“With the snow melting up north, there’s a lot of systems, it’s hard to go ahead, more than 48 hours, but we’re getting ready anyway,” he added.

“Will we have a second with a bigger surge?” St-Maurice asked. “I don’t know, but you should really prepare.”

Top Stories

Top Stories