Utility crews across Canada scramble to restore power amid winter storm

Hundreds of thousands of people across the country still without electricity
Saturday - 24/12/2022 23:59 Author: Editors Desk Source: CBC News:
People make their way through the snow in Ottawa's Glebe neighbourhood on Saturday. (Spencer Colby/The Canadian Press)
People make their way through the snow in Ottawa's Glebe neighbourhood on Saturday. (Spencer Colby/The Canadian Press)

The latest:

  • How is the winter storm affecting you? Join the discussion with Cross Country Checkup.
  • Environment Canada has issued weather warnings for most provinces and territories.
  • Across Ontario, Quebec, B.C. and the Maritimes, hundreds of thousands of people are without power.
  • Hundreds of passengers trapped on Via Rail trains between Toronto and Montreal overnight.
  • Worries about flooding, dangerous road conditions in B.C.

  • CBC Lite: If the power or data on your device is low, get your storm updates on CBC Lite. It's our low-bandwidth, text-only website.

Utility companies are making headway in their efforts to restore power to hundreds of thousands of people across Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and the Maritime provinces.

In many parts of the country, including Ontario and B.C., officials are urging motorists to avoid travel if possible as treacherous winter conditions continue.

Western and northern parts of Canada are facing another day of extremely cold temperatures, while in some places, rainfall will create flood risks due to the frozen ground.


260,000 without power in Ontario, Quebec

In Ontario, upwards of 60,000 customers were without power on Saturday, mostly in eastern and southern parts of the province, as well as north past Thunder Bay. 

Hydro One crews had restored power to thousands of properties but were hampered by high winds, blowing snow and blizzard-like conditions which continue to cause outages. The utility company warned that some customers may face ongoing restoration delays.

The Ontario Provincial Police were urging people to stay off the roads if possible, after massive pileups and hundreds of other collisions on Friday amid icy road conditions with very low visibility.

A man gestures while another looks on, as cables pull a snow plow that is stuck behind them.
A snowplow vehicle is towed amid a winter storm in Canfield, Ont., on Saturday. (Carlos Osorio/Reuters)

There were multiple closures along Highway 401 on Saturday, while many other highway sections throughout southern parts of the province remained closed. Keep up to date with the latest closures on the 511 Ontario website.

Fort Erie, at Ontario's border with Buffalo, N.Y., declared a state of emergency Saturday afternoon. About 15,000 residents were without power, while flooding caused evacuations, and travellers and truck drivers were stranded near the Peace Bridge border crossing. 

Chatham-Kent, in the province's southwest, also declared a state of emergency after road conditions led to multiple crashes and left hundreds of people stranded. It was urging people to stay off the roads so plows and tow trucks could attempt to clear snow and abandoned vehicles.

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 Keywords: Canada

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