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Homeowners in Kemptville, Ont. prepare for flooding as Rideau River rises


As the cleanup continues in Kemptville, Ont. after Wednesday's storm, another threat lingers for residents – rising river levels.

The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority has issued a flood warning for many areas of the Rideau Valley Watershed, including properties around Bob's Lake, Christie Lake, Tay River and areas along the Rideau River.

Behind Sylvie Leduc's property in Kemptville, sandbags are being placed one-by-one as the Rideau River continues to rise.

"I'm already worried about the sump pump and losing power and it's gone up pretty fast since last night," Leduc told CTV News Ottawa on Friday.

She lost power following Wednesday's ice storm for almost 24 hours, but luckily her basement did not flood.

"I bailed water for four hours with a popcorn scoop and a bucket," Leduc said. "I had friends come over and luckily I found someone who had a generator in a box, brand new never used."

As the river slowly continues to creep over her back yard, she points to her fire pit that's now underwater.

Sylvie Leduc carries a sandbag at her Kemptville, Ont. home. (Nate Vandermeer/CTV News Ottawa)

Markers have been pushed into the ground along the water's edge, so she can see how much it's rising.

"It's coming up pretty fast and I'm kind of worried," Leduc said.

The municipality of North Grenville has offered free sand and bags in the public works building at 2814 Concession Road.

The building will remain open around the clock for those who need to fill sandbags.

"The spirits aren't bad considering that they are trying to save their homes from the water rising," said North Grenville Coun. Doreen O'Sullivan.

"People who can are coming to get what they need and it just makes it a little faster if the bags could be ready," she said.

O'Sullivan is asking for volunteers to come help out, so that homeowners can just grab bags and go.

"If high school students would like to come out and help, I'm more than happy to sign and certify that they've had these volunteer hours filling sandbags," she said.

Residents fill sandbags at the North Grenville Public Works building on Good Friday. (Nate Vandermeer/CTV News Ottawa)

For Leduc, the river has crept up to her house before, so she knows what to expect.

"I'm guessing it was back in 2014, and it came right up to the front steps," she recalled. "We had fish swimming all over the lawn and then once the water went back I was trying to rescue all the fish!"

With the help of friends and family, approximately 150 sandbags were filled and placed behind her home on Friday.

"It's amazing. I have tears in my eyes right now," Leduc paused. "I just love Kemptville and just appreciate everybody and everything that they do."

A thought seconded by the councillor, who says they'll continue to do whatever they can to help.

"It's that kind of community, and long may that spirit live here," O'Sullivan said. Top Stories

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