Toronto Flash Flood Submerged Cars, Train at Rush Hour (+Video)
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Toronto flooding: Tuesday morning, about 35,000 are still without power—down from about 300,000 Monday—and Toronto, Canada, is recovering from the flash flooding that submerged cars during rush hour traffic Monday evening, and left about 1,000 huddled in a commuter train until 1 a.m.
Some parts of Toronto were pelted with more than 100 millimeters (3.9 inches) of rain, according to Canadian publication MacLean’s magazine. In a single day Monday’s rains beat the monthly average for July of 74.4 mm. The previous one-day rainfall record was set at 29.2 mm in 2008. Environment Canada predicts a risk of thunderstorms on Tuesday and Wednesday, but Mayor Rob Ford tweeted Monday night: “The worst of the storm is over but there is more to come. Please be vigilant.”
Ford tweeted Tuesday morning, “City crews have been working through the night to restore services after yesterday’s intense rainfall.” He reported that subway lines were running at near-normal capacity and most of the major roadways were again open.
At the height of the storm, 80 percent of neighboring city Mississauga, with a population of about 700,000, was without power, reports MacLean’s. Parts of the Don Valley Parkway, usually packed at rush hour, were empty and quiet—cars were cut off from entering as the Don River swelled, engulfing the bike path, foot paths, and parts of the highway.
Michael Mahonen, who posted a video to YouTube of the swelled river (see below), noted the bike path was more suited to kayaks Monday evening.
Twitter pictures show cars flooded to the roofs as commuters were caught unaware by the rapidly rising waters.
About 1,000 passengers were stranded on a commuter train that filled with water Monday evening, according to MacLean’s. Passengers crowed into the highest parts of the train as the cars at a lower plane filled. Twitter pictures document the rising water levels inside the train. Rescuers did not empty all passengers from the train until about 1 a.m.
Porter Airlines flight attendant, Danielle Haigh, said Porter flights at the Toronto Island airport were cancelled as of 8:30 p.m. and the ferry did not resume operation until 4 a.m. Tuesday.
The Toronto flooding comes just weeks after massive flooding in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Calgary officials estimate damages at about $256.5 million, according to broadcaster CBC.