Melting snow, following one of the most severe winters in Canada's wheat belt have been threatening to wipe out several small farming communities.
AV flood devastation
LV People working on sandbag banks and flood water puring trhough town (2)
CU Woman and man watching (2 shots)
GV Trucks being loaded with earth by mechanical shovel
GV People working on dykes on Kapel River at Lumsden
GV River in torrent
Earth moving equipment and men watching flood waters (3)
GV Rear of sandbagged dyke PAN TO man walking through water
GV & PAN Across flooded area to show dyke holding back water (2 shots)
GV Boyne River at Carman
SV PULL BACK TO GV Swollen River PAN TO people behind dyke
GV Main street showing sandbagged shops
GV River being held back by sandbags and men building dyke (2 shots)
LV Hospital across flood water and CU hospital (2 shots)
CU Truck wheel through water AND GV (2 shots)
SV Men pulling boat along street (2 shots)
Initials SC/2100 SC/2136
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Background: Melting snow, following one of the most severe winters in Canada's wheat belt have been threatening to wipe out several small farming communities.
The flood waters have only been held by local people working all through the day and night to build higher dykes to contain the swelling rivers.
The town of Lumsden, 18 miles (30 Kms) north of Regina, Saskatchewan, was threatened on Monday (22 April) by flood waters that came to within one foot of the hastily constructed dykes.
Officials said it was a race between the water and heavy earth moving machinery to determine whether the town of 850 people survived.
In the Province of Manitoba, Indian Reserves in low lying areas were hard hit. 700 Indians were evacuated form one of them.
No loss of life has been reported in either Saskatchewan or Manitoba.
The River Boyne, which flows through the town of Carman just west of Winnipeg, is normally 75 ft. wide (24 metres). Now it is more than 1,800 ft. (600 metres) across and local people have used more then 200,000 sandbags to try to save their community. The local hospital has been evacuated and about 200 families have been forced to leave their homes.
Later the floods in the western prairies began to ease and resident and volunteers faced a huge cleaning job.
But officials warned that there was a lot of winter snow still to melt.
SYNOPSIS: Serious floods have hit the wheat growing prairies of Canada.
People in small farming communities like this have had to work day and night on sandbag defences to save their homes form complete inundation by the torrents of water.
A woman watches hopefully to see if the hundreds of emergency workers can contain the floods with hastily constructed earth dykes.
Here at Lumsden near Regina, Saskatchewan, it's a tense race between the rising water and the earthmoving machinery to determine the fats of the town. The dykes reached fifteen feet high and just managed to contain the six and a half billion gallons of flood water pouring through Lumsden each day.
These unprecedented floods were caused by melting snow in the wake of one of the most severe winters in the history of Canada's wheat belt.
The effects have been widespread. In Manitoba, Indian reserves in low lying areas were hit. Seven hundred Indians had to be evacuated.
The River Boyne, where it flows through the town of Carman, fifty mile south of Winnipeg, is usually about seventy five feet wide. No. after heavy rain as well as melting snow, it's more than eighteen hundred feet wide.
In Carman only two grocery shops are open -- normal life in the town has stopped and all efforts go into the fight against the floods.
More than two hundred thousand sandbags have been used to try to save this town.
Even the hospital has had to be evacuated as well as a home for the elderly.
Although the floods are beginning to recede, and in some places the clean-up operation is under way, officials warn there's still a lot of snow to melt.