Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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OPP say 1 dead in Erin after storm; flooding and power outages reported across Greater Toronto Area

Ontario Provincial Police say a person has died after a strong storm system moved through the community and onto other parts of the Greater Toronto Area on Saturday.

According to a post on the service’s west region Twitter account, Wellington detachment OPP officers along with Guelph-Wellington Paramedic Service personnel and Erin Fire Department crews were called at around 6:10 p.m. with reports of “an injured person on a golf course during a violent storm.” Officers said the victim was later pronounced dead.

Global News contacted an OPP spokesperson to get more details about the incident, but a spokesperson said they were unable to release additional information as the investigation is ongoing.

The tweet noted Hydro One also had to be called due to downed wires and trees.

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Environment Canada first issued a severe thunderstorm warning in Toronto and other surrounding municipalities later in the afternoon. In Toronto, the warning was cancelled just before 6 p.m. before another one was issued roughly half an hour later. The second warning was dropped just after 8:15 p.m.

Toronto Police Const. Alex Li told Global News officers were responding to a spike in calls in Etobicoke as well as downtown. He also said the 911 communications centre at one point had more than 40 calls for non-emergency, weather-related issues where no one was injured.

“When people utilize 911 for non-emergency purposes, it ties up a call-taker from taking an emergency call that could result in life or death,” he said, encouraging people to call 311 if no one has been injured.

Peel Regional Police reported on Twitter that there were calls for flooding in the community. However, it wasn’t immediately clear how widespread the damage was.

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In Mississauga, Global News observed flooded out sections of roads and on a portion of Derry Road West, a few vehicles appeared to be stuck in a flooded out section. Also, a multi-storey apartment building near Erin Mills Parkway and the Queen Elizabeth Way also experienced severe water-related damage.

Firefighters in Brampton and Mississauga also attended two properties to extinguish fires reportedly caused by lightning strikes. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

A Toronto Fire Services spokesperson told Global News firefighters received dozens of calls from people trapped in elevators due to power outages as well as flooding and downed wires.

A spokesperson for Toronto Hydro said as of 9 p.m., approximately 13,000 customers lost power after the storm system. Most of those outages were in Etobicoke.


© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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