News

Latest Update on Ontario's Response to the Ice Storm - Dec. 30

Ontario is continuing to work around the clock to respond to the ice storm that is still affecting parts of the province. 

Efforts are being made to help people replace food they may have lost as a result of the storm. The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management is working with its Supply Chain Alliance partners to obtain and distribute grocery store gift cards to these Ontarians.

The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management is coordinating resources across government and working closely with our partners to help restore power and services to all affected communities and keep people safe.

POWER RESTORATION

At the start of the ice storm, more than 600,000 customers were without power across affected communities. 

Power restoration has now been virtually completed.

Toronto Hydro now reports 725 customers are without power down from a peak of 300,000 and is predicting that these remaining customers will be restored today.

Updates on power outages caused by the storm can be found on most local utility websites or at http://www.ontario.ca/warning

The Province is grateful to local electricity distribution companies across the province who have supported power restoration efforts in a number of different ways. 

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Several warming centres remain open in the GTA to give people a respite from the cold. Visit ontario.ca/warning for the latest information and locations for warming centres.

The health system across the GTA has stabilized and hospitals are open and currently able to meet patient needs.

STAYING SAFE

  • Ice is still melting and falling off trees and tall buildings. People should avoid walking under trees and be extremely vigilant while outdoors.
  • The Provincial Emergency Operations Centre (PEOC) constantly monitors evolving situations inside and outside of Ontario. It coordinates the government's response to major emergencies and is staffed at all times.
  • Steer clear of downed power lines. They could still be live and deadly even if they show no active danger signs.
  • If hydro wires connected to your home appear damaged, do not touch them, even if you believe the power is off. Do not attempt the repairs yourself; instead, call a licensed electrical contractor to do the job. The Electrical Safety Authority has contact information for more than 7,000 licensed contractors at 1-877-372-7233 and www.esasafe.com. Or consult your local telephone directory.
  • Carbon monoxide goes undetected and is deadly. Do not heat your homes with devices that are designed for outdoor use, particularly barbecues and outdoor generators. If you are using an outdoor generator, ensure that the exhaust fumes do not enter your home.
  • Electrically connected smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms do not work when the power is out unless they have battery back-up, so make sure your home has battery-operated smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms.
  • Unplug all unnecessary appliances to protect them from potential power surges as hydro crews work to restore electricity. And make sure the stove is off. Leave on only select lights to let you know that you're back up and running.
  • Keep a few taps turned on to a trickle to prevent pipes from freezing.
  • You can make the most of your cellphone battery by turning down the screen brightness and turning off functions such as Bluetooth, WiFi and location services.
  • Take a moment to check on elderly neighbours and people with mobility issues.