An egg farmer in southern Manitoba says the decision to flood proof his operation has paid off this year.
Kurt Siemens operates Siemens Farms located between Morris and Rosenort.
"Everything south of me right now is underwater so there's very limited road access," he said. "I've seen a couple tractors driving through the water. We brought the egg truck in this morning and he was driving through about 10 inches of water. You just have to make sure the roads are staked properly so you can see where the ditches are because you're driving through the middle of a lake. If you know where that is and you get the debris off the road then we're pretty good."
Siemens talked about the decision to flood proof their facility.
"We've been totally prepared. We just built a new complex here in 2018/2019 and everything here is built up on a pad that is three and half feet higher than 1997 flood levels. Our barns are all OK. My son's house and shop, he's inside a dike and the dike is 2.5 feet higher than 1997 level."
Siemens says the closure of Highway 75 hasn't impacted where their eggs are shipping to although it has added a few extra kilometres on to the trip.
He notes safety and welfare of their 40,000 chickens is a top priority.
"We built up our barn on a pad. We also have enough feed storage here for a minimum three weeks, so we did that on Thursday. We got all our tanks filled up so we're good for three weeks so we don't have to bring any feed in. Eggs, we have storage, in our cooler itself we probably have two weeks of storage plus we have a dry van with a dolly that we can also fill as a backup. We're about as prepared as we can be. It's a lot of extra cost that you have to put up a head of time but then when the flood comes, then mostly you're prepared. We make sure we have a couple pumps. We have a boat with a motor, we have everything sitting and ready, just in case something happens."
Siemens says during the flood of 1997 they had to take their birds out of the barns, adding their house and shop also got flooded. They've done a lot of prep following that to prepare for years like 2022.