At least 3 deaths and 343,000 power outages after severe thunderstorms in Ontario

The first victims were in a trailer at the Pinehurst Lake camping area west of Hamilton when a tree fell on them shortly after noon. The balance is one dead and two slightly injured, according to the Ontario Provincial Police.

The storm line and its powerful gusts then moved over the Toronto area. In Brampton, a 70-year-old woman was struck by a falling tree while she was walking outside. She was taken to the hospital, she did not survive her injuries, according to Peel police.

During a press conference at the scene of the tragedy, agent Heather Cannon evoked an absolutely tragic accident […]. Though the storm was brief, it took a tragic toll.

In Ottawa, one person was killed in the west end of the city, police said late Saturday, without elaborating on the circumstances of the incident. On the Quebec side, Gatineau police told Radio-Canada that a 51-year-old woman drowned after a boat capsized in the Ottawa River.

Outgoing Ontario Premier Doug Ford offered condolences to loved ones of those killed when winds toppled trees and power lines in a swath of the province stretching from Sarnia to Ottawa.

I am deeply saddened to learn of the tragic deaths of two people in Ontario as a result of today’s inclement weather, Ford said in a tweet posted that evening. My thoughts are with their families and friends and I offer my condolences on behalf of all Ontarians.

Three other people suffered non-life-threatening injuries after trees fell on two golf carts in Zora Township, located in southwestern Ontario.

Tens of thousands of residents were also without power, according to utility company Hydro One, whose outage map showed some 1,936 outages, leaving more than 343,000 people in the dark on Saturday night.

overturned plane

London, Ontario airport operations manager Steve Faulkner said a small plane capsized during the storm.

There was a parked plane that was tied down and secured and the winds were strong enough to break the straps and then the plane flipped over, he said. The aircraft was transferred for cleaning.

An overturned plane in London, Ontario, on Saturday. Winds of 132 km/h were measured at the Kitchener airport, according to Environment Canada.

Photo: Photo submitted by Paul Colyn

The storm was so powerful that Environment Canada issued an emergency alert on all television channels, radio stations and wireless phones.

Environment Canada meteorologist Daniel Liota said winds reached 132 km/h at the Kitchener airport, prompting authorities to issue the advisory message.

He added that the geographic extent of the storm was quite unusual.

It’s very important. We have reached the highest level a storm can reach. »

a quote from Daniel Liota, Environment Canada Meteorologist

Liota noted that powerful thunderstorms were recently added to the list of events that can trigger the alert system.

First storm emergency warning

According to Alert Ready, which manages the alert system for Canadian governments, this is the first time an emergency alert message has been triggered in four years, since the data was compiled.

To trigger an alert, a storm must be accompanied by winds reaching at least 130 km/h or hail with a diameter of at least three inches, or the size of a tennis ball, Mr Liota explained.

Environment Canada’s weather station at Toronto Pearson International Airport measured gusts of 121 km/hour.

The storm eventually moved into Quebec, where power outages are also shutting out thousands of residents.

Boaters rescued on Lake Ontario

Meanwhile, an unknown number of people on a boat were rescued after a distress call during the storm, according to Toronto police.

Police say they were called to rescue the occupants of a distressed pleasure boat near the shore of Lake Ontario in the area of ​​Lake Shore Avenue West and Park Lawn Road. None of the passengers were taken to the hospital, emergency workers said.

Several municipalities were on a severe storm warning as powerful gusts ripped through much of the Toronto area on Saturday afternoon.

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A tree shattered the roof of this home near Little Portugal in Toronto during Saturday’s storm.

Photo: CBC

Extremely gusty winds can destroy buildings causing tornado-like damage, uproot large trees and push vehicles off the road.

Evacuation of a subway train

Shortly after 1 p.m., police in Peel, west of Toronto, reported live power lines were down, including one on a car with occupants inside.

An underground train also ran over a fallen tree on an elevated track near Royal York station in the city’s west, requiring passengers to be evacuated through a tunnel.

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