National News

Ont community of Kashechewan to be evacuated

By The Canadian Press

KASHECHEWAN, Ont. - An evacuation of all remaining residents in the northern Ontario First Nation of Kashechewan was to be carried out Monday because of the threat of rising floodwaters, said an official with the provincial government.

Community leaders in the remote community of 2,000 asked the federal and Ontario governments to help move all those residents who haven't already been relocated said Andrew Morrison, a spokesman for Ontario's Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.

"All the residents of Kashechewan will be moved in the course of the next day or so," Morrison said in a phone interview late Sunday.

"We going to continue with more flights (Monday)" he said, adding flights were to resume "first thing" in the morning.

The federal and Ontario governments were involved in the efforts to move the remaining residents from the community located on the shores of James Bay, he said.

Community leaders in Kashechewan declared a state of emergency this weekend due to rising waters on the Albany River.

Roughly 600 people were relocated to Thunder Bay and Greenstone on Saturday and Sunday despite poor weather on Sunday that hampered evacuation efforts.

The community has faced rising flood waters for several days. Last week some residents were forced from their homes and moved to communities further south but were allowed to return as the situation eased.

The situation, however, was expected to get worse, prompting the expanded evacuation, Morrison said.

Kashechewan has a history of spring time flooding, but federal plans to move the community off the flood plain fell through several years ago.

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