Some residents in London’s Huron Heights neighbourhood were still without power Tuesday with streets and yards a mess of overturned trees and limbs.
That area, as well as Carling Heights and parts of Old East Village, were badly damaged following the deadly thunderstorm that ripped across southwestern Ontario on Saturday.
There were no reported injuries in London, but thousands were left in the dark. Residents living near Hawkesbury Ave. and Wingate St. in Huron Heights were without power for more than 30 hours.
“I had a freezer full of food, but luckily my neighbour had power and was kind enough to let us run a couple of electrical chords over to cook some of the food that same day, and some of it unfortunately had to be tossed out,” said Kevin Smith.
He and his family were camping at the Pinery when the storm hit. His phone lit up shortly afterward with neighbours texting him photos of the damage.
“We got hit pretty bad,” he said, noting the 30-foot tree toppled in his backyard.
A spokesperson for London Hydro said that as of Tuesday, about 50 houses were still without power but crews hoped to have it back by the evening.
‘It’s so sad’
Rick Truant watched his beloved pine tree go down on his front lawn after it was hit by what he describes as a “domino-like-effect” from another tree by his property.
“It was a rare kind of storm where it just streams down really narrowly,” he said. “The wind came up and rain came up and it just streamed right down this road and took down all our trees.”
The large pine tree’s appeal is what led Truant to buy his house in the neighbourhood nine years ago, he said. Other neighbours were also lamenting the loss of trees which used to provide a dense canopy.
“Now it’s cleaned up and what used to be a complete canopy all the way down our road, now looks like a subdivision with little trees here and there, it’s so sad,” Truant said.
Sydney McIntyre wasn’t home during the storm, but she said her boyfriend heard a loud crash, which was the sound of multiple trees falling at once.
“It was insane, there was one really large tree that canopied over the whole house pretty much, so many people were out on the streets. It was definitely hectic for sure,” she said.
Even though they’re sad to see their precious trees gone, Huron Heights’ residents are grateful that no one was injured. Many people also said they were thankful for city crews and community members, who worked together to get the area cleaned up.