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PRESS RELEASECity taking next steps in tornado recovery efforts
Friday, July 16, 2021

Barrie, ON – The City of Barrie's emergency personnel continue to work today in the Mapleview and Prince William Way area responding to the damage caused by yesterday's tornado.  Approximately 60 homes are currently deemed unsafe, as determined by City building inspectors.

Do not enter any homes unless deemed safe by City Building Officials

Unsafe orders have been issued and will be posted on homes that have suffered extensive structural damage and are deemed to be unsafe. This is the City's obligation under the Building Code Act. Stay out of damaged buildings until they can be assessed and temporarily repaired.

Utility restorations
Alectra reports that there are less than 20 homes and businesses without power at this time and the time of return is unknown. Alectra will provide information on doors in the affected area. Those connected to InnPower can refer to their Outage Map for updates.

Enbridge Gas is working to restore gas service to affected customers when it's safe to do so. It's expected service will be restored to the majority of customers by end of day on July 17. Enbridge will go door-to-door to undertake this work for houses that are safe to occupy, and will need to access the inside of homes to safely relight natural gas appliances. Do not attempt to relight your own appliances.

Some homes that were damaged but remain habitable may have water service turned off. If people are returning home and need their water turned back on or have questions about water service, please call 705-726-4242 (follow the prompts if after-hours).

Recovery and cleanup efforts

The next steps in the recovery effort include the following:

  • Information centres are set up in a trailer near Saint Gabriel's school today to assist affected residents. This will be a central area for assistance and questions.
  • Disposal bins are set up in local parks in the area, where City staff will do a clean up of the streets and sidewalks.
  • Public disposal bins are set up on street boulevards to allow residents to throw out household garbage and building material/debris. Household hazardous waste items must be left beside the bins and City staff will remove them for proper disposal.
  • For affected residents, fees will be waived at the landfill until July 23, and the landfill will be open on July 19 (usually closed on Mondays) to handle additional waste.
  • DO NOT park on the road. There will be a no parking order in effect for the affected areas for the overnight hours on Sunday, July 18 and Monday, July 19 so that streets can be cleaned. Tow trucks will be brought in if needed to help remove vehicles from the street if they can't be moved due to damages.
  • Once the streets are cleared of debris, street sweepers will go through the area to help facilitate travel, allow work crews to get through streets, and to allow residents to reach their homes safely.

Next steps and information for affected residents

The City is providing information for affected residents to help them receive the support needed to assess damages and recover from the tornado:

  • Orders indicating status of affected homes will be posted on front doors or other visible area at the front of properties. This is the City's obligation under the Building Code Act.
  • The number of buildings determined to be unsafe will change as more detailed information becomes available. If an order has not been posted on your house, and you think it may be unsafe, call the tornado assistance line at 705-728-8442 and Building Department staff will investigate.
  • A trailer is on-site with City Building staff available to help residents with building assessments and safety. Please rely on professionals to help clear your home safely. Visit the on-site trailer or call the tornado assistance line at 705-728-8442.
  • Anyone displaced by the storm is being supported through an evacuation centre, and supports are available for temporary housing, food, clothing, etc.
  • Document the damage as best you can for a property tax relief application. Visit barrie.ca/PropertyTaxes to access the application form and more information.
  • The Government of Ontario offers two programs that provide financial assistance following sudden, unexpected natural disasters. Visit emergencymanagementontario.ca.

Affected residents will be provided with detailed information later today to assist them with next steps to take for property assessments, supports and help available, and how to handle temporary and final repairs.

The City also reminds people to not bring donations to the tornado recovery site. We have sufficient volunteers at this time and the Salvation Army is currently accepting financial donations given the overwhelming response.

The City will continue to release new information as soon as it becomes available. Ongoing public information about the situation and resources are posted on our website at barrie.ca/TornadoRecovery. Please also follow the City's social media channels for updates.

 Additional Resources:

  • Tornado assistance line for affected residents: 705-728-8442
  • Ontario SPCA support for anyone who needs temporary housing or food for their animal:
    310-SPCA (7722)
  • Barrie Public Library Painswick branch: offering computers, free wi-fi and laptops that can be borrowed in-branch for anyone that needs internet and computer access
  • Red Cross registration number for residents directly affected: 289-206-8275
  • Ontario 211: Community and Social Services: call 2-1-1 or visit communityconnection.ca
  • Canadian Mental Health Association Simcoe County: cmhastarttalking.ca
  • Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868 or kidshelpphone.ca

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Media Contact:
Scott LaMantia
Senior Communications Advisor
The City of Barrie
(705) 739-4220 ext. 4529
scott.lamantia@barrie.ca

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