Tens of thousands still without power in Ontario and Quebec after deadly storm

Arabnews24.ca:Sunday 22 May 2022 10:05 AM: As many as five people are dead and tens of thousands remain without power following a fierce storm that swept across Ontario and Quebec.

In Quebec, Gatineau police said a 51-year-old woman died when the boat she was in capsized in the Ottawa River near Masson-Angers, Que., during Saturday's storm.

Ontario Provincial Police said a 44-year-old man was killed in Greater Madawaska, west of Ottawa, after reportedly being struck by a falling tree, while police in Ottawa said one person died in the city's west end, but didn't release any further details.

Peel Regional Police said a woman in her 70s was killed by a falling tree while she was walking in Brampton, northwest of Toronto.

OPP reported one person was killed and two others were injured when a tree fell on a camping trailer near Pinehurst Lake in Waterloo Region.

The Township of Uxbridge, Ont., declared a local state of emergency after the storm caused significant damage in the community.

A statement posted on the township's website says there are widespread power outages and many closed roads due to downed trees and power lines. Residents are being asked to stay home to allow municipal workers to focus on removing road hazards rather than manage traffic congestion.

Some of the strongest winds to hit Ontario, as the line of thunderstorms developed near Sarnia and then moved west, were in the Ottawa area. Environment Canada reported peak wind gusts of 120 km/h at Ottawa International Airport.

At an emergency news conference Saturday night, the city of Ottawa's head of emergency services, Kim Ayotte, was surprised by the storm's scope.

"This one hit us hard, it hit us fast ... I was out at the airport earlier and I saw telephone posts knocked down, large trees uprooted, several hydro lines being split in half. It was incredible. The sheer area that was affected is like nothing I've seen in my memory."

Utility workers work to make sure the power is off as motorists remain in their vehicles after the storm took down poles and power lines, on Merivale Road in Ottawa, on Saturday. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

Officials in Ottawa say the cleanup from the storm could take several days.

Trees and power lines were knocked down by ferocious winds across that swath of the province. At one point, winds reached 132 km/h at the Kitchener airport.

As of early Sunday morning, about 269,000 Hydro One customers were without power, while Hydro Ottawa reported more than 550 outages affecting over 170,000 customers.

Hydro One is Ontario's largest service provider for electricity and supplies power to Toronto Hydro, which on Sunday morning tweeted that it continues to deal with "multiple outages across the city."

As of early Sunday morning, more than 400,000 Hydro-Québec customers were still without power. At its peak, the storm knocked out the lights for more than 510,000 customers, the Crown corporation said. Most of the power outages were in the Quebec City, Outaouais, Laurentians, Lanaudière and the Montérégie regions.

WATCH | Severe thunderstorms hit southern Ontario

Severe thunderstorms hit southern Ontario

20 hours ago

Duration 0:31

Several cities and towns were under a thunderstorm warning on Saturday as areas such as Kitchener, Ont., saw heavy rain and high winds.

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