Thousands without power as freezing rain hits Windsor-Essex

A freezing rain warning is in effect for Windsor-Essex.  (CBC - photo credit)

A freezing rain warning is in effect for Windsor-Essex. (CBC – photo credit)

There are blackouts as well as closures and cancellations as freezing rain hits Windsor-Essex.

A freezing rain warning issued by Environment Canada warned of ice accumulations of up to 10 millimeters and wind gusts of up to 60 km/h.

As of 9 p.m., Enwin Utilities is reporting power outages in several neighborhoods, some affecting several thousand homes and businesses.

ELK Energy, which serves Essex, Lakeshore and Kingsville, says it’s also experiencing multiple outages in its service area.

“All crews have been dispatched to restore hydropower as quickly and safely as possible,” the company said on Twitter.

Essex Powerlines says there is an outage in Leamington around 7pm affecting 4,159 customers.

Jennifer LaGrassa/CBC

Jennifer LaGrassa/CBC

Phong Nguy, Public Works Manager for the City of Windsor, said teams had been monitoring the situation since early Wednesday morning and were salting ahead of the storm.

All 21 trucks are out on the salty roads and crews will continue to monitor the weather as a mix of rain and freezing rain falls.

He urged drivers to give trucks space to do their work.

Windsor International Airport lists a number of departures and arrivals as delayed or cancelled.

Airport CEO Mark Galvin said that due to the weather-related issues, travelers should check before heading to the airport.

“Just check your flight status with your airline,” he said.

Galvin said crews are working hard to minimize any problems caused by the storm.

Jennifer LaGrassa/CBC

Jennifer LaGrassa/CBC

“The [operations] The guys are staying ahead of the game and not just watching the weather but what’s next to make those decisions for the treatments that we have to do on the catwalks,” he said.

“Our job is to try to always be one step ahead and do what we have to do.”

How long could this weather system affect the airport?

“We’ll probably see some impact by tomorrow and hopefully that will be the end of it, but weather is weather and it can change quickly,” he said.

The University of Windsor tweeted that all classes after 3 p.m. would be canceled due to the weather.

In an email, a spokesperson said the Leddy Library will close at 4:30 p.m., the student center at 5 p.m., the Toldo Lancer Center and the Forge Fitness Center at 7 p.m. and all scheduled programs beginning at 5 p.m.: 00 o’clock to be cancelled

However, the Lancer women’s basketball game at 7:00 p.m. will go ahead as scheduled.

St. Clair College announced that due to the warning, all classes at the Windsor and Chatham campuses scheduled from 1 p.m. until evening were canceled.

The college plans to open tomorrow as planned.

School bus services for pupils in Windsor-Essex, Chatham-Kent and Sarnia-Lambton have also been canceled for Wednesday.

The decision was made due to the approaching ice storm that is expected to hit the area when students typically head home in the afternoon.


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