NEW BRUNSWICK UNDERWATER: The 2018 Saint John River Flood

Lisa Hrabluk


In April 2018, New Brunswick's famous Reversing Falls simply stopped reversing as the 2018 Saint John River flood caused the worst damage on the river in more than 50 years.

At its height, more than 300,000 cubic feet per second of water raced through the Mactaquac Dam just above Fredericton, 3.5 times more water than normal. When the waters finally receded two weeks later, cottages had floated away, homes and cars were underwater, and thousands of people had been displaced, their homes destroyed.

In New Brunswick Underwater, Lisa Hrabluk uses words and images to follow volunteers, evacuees and first responders who raced the rising river to save their communities from this historic flood.


"When the Saint John River rose in 2018, it reminded us, powerfully, of its place in New Brunswick's history. Lisa Hrabluk introduces us to the people whose attention it seized and who've been forced to reflect on how they can live in harmony with this extraordinary river in the future."

                                                                                                           — Costas Halavrezos, journalist and former CBC host of Radio Noon


"The 2018 Saint John River flood challenged our community's resources, threatened properties and also brought out the best in people. This is a story everyone should read because it shows us that New Brunswickers are resilient, selfless and kind-hearted."

— Don Darling, mayor City of Saint John


Lisa Hrabluk is an awarding-winning journalist and has written for Time, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, CBC and the Telegraph Journal in New Brunswick. Lisa has won a National Newspaper Award, an Atlantic Journalism Award, an Ontario News Award and a 2015 YWCA's Women of Distinction Award.

Michael Hawkins is an award-winning photojournalist and commercial photographer whose work has appeared in publications across North America, including the Globe and Mail, Los Angeles Times, The Hockey News and Canadian Press. He is the owner of WordPhoto Productions Inc.

Lisa and Michael have been creative and life partners for 20 years. They live on highground  in Rothesay, N.B. with their daughter Alexandra.