More signs of spring: blasting river ice in Ottawa

Ice on the Rideau River is cut then blasted to prevent flooding. Image: City of Ottawa

Ice on the Rideau River is cut – then blasted – to prevent flooding. Image: City of Ottawa

The temperature this morning felt ridiculous: -26 C (which is about -16 F).

Hey, I like winter. But really. This one’s been tough. Enough already!

So here are a few more hopeful signs of spring.

Not one but two sets of triplets were born this week at the Central Experimental Farm in Ottawa.

According to this CBC report (with “aww, cute” video):

Wednesday’s triplets were Toggenburg goats, while Thursday’s triplets were Boer goats.

Staff at the Experimental Farm said the odds of goats having triplets are about the same as humans having twins.

Clocks get re-set this weekend for daylight saving time (apparently daylight “savings” time – plural – is the wrong term). Here’s more from ABC news on ways to adjust to that shift.

And on Saturday morning workers will be cutting keys and blasting river ice in Ottawa to prevent flooding in advance of the spring thaw that’s (presumably) just around the corner. The Ottawa Citizen reports this will be taking place on the Rideau River near the Sussex Street Bridge “… from 10 to 10:30 a.m. and spectators will be able to watch from spots deemed safe by city workers.”

Here are two videos depicting that activity. The first is sort of a tutorial from the City of Ottawa. The second is from the BBC with some very lovely images and a more-dramatic tone: “The centre of Ottawa is safe for another year”. (OK, good to know.)

Enjoy and hello spring!

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2 Comments on “More signs of spring: blasting river ice in Ottawa”

  1. Hank says:

    Love that BBC video. If I lived in the “centre of Ottawa” I’d feel safe too after viewing that video!

  2. Michael Greer says:

    Blasting ice?… Preemptively preventing flooding?? Canadians tend to take government services for granted, and grumble about taxes without realizing what the world looks like in other places. Here in the States, we spend our tax money blowing up people in the Middle East, and wait and hope that serious flooding doesn’t occur.

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