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RMWB provides River Breakup Community update

A screenshot of the livestream of the Athabasca River on Apr 14, 2023, as the Municipality prepares for river breakup season. Image supplied by the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo/YouTube.

The Municipality has released an update on 2023 River Breakup.

A community update had been posted on its website and to social media on Apr. 13, 2023.

As the time nears for River Breakup, the RMWB will provide new information on its website.

Released by Alberta Environment and Parks, the AB Rivers App reports on ice advisories, flow rates, and water levels.

River Breakup preparations

Temporary measures such as triple dams or water-filled barriers, clay berms, pumps and plugs have been installed across the downtown and Lower Townsite.

Preparing an emergency kit for the home and having a plan in case of an emergency is also recommended.

In 2022, the Municipality updated its map on river breakup evacuation zones.

The map covering flood evacuation zones for the Lower Townsite issued by the Municipality in 2022. Image supplied by the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.


The RMWB also warns residents to stay away from riverbanks and watch for thin ice during river breakup season.

“As temperatures warm, the ice will thin. Do not travel on the ice during this time. Once river breakup begins, large sections of ice can move unexpectedly and water levels can change quickly. Do not watch river breakup from a shoreline, closed areas, the bridge or on the side of the road.”

A livestream documenting the river breakup on the Athabasca River is available on the Municipality’s YouTube channel.

Residents in need of additional support during an evacuation may register with the RMWB for the Vulnerable Persons Registry.