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​Tornado Recovery

Updates & Resources

This frequently updated page contains information and links relating to assistance and support following the tornado that occurred in Barrie on July 15, 2021.

This page was last updated on July 30 at 11:50am. Please also follow @cityofbarrie on Twitter for timely updates. 

On-Site Donations are not Being Accepted

There's been an outpouring of support from the community to assist people who have been affected by the tornado. Thank you. At this time, no on-site donations, including food, are being accepted. To be added to a list to offer assistance or donations please email ServiceBarrie@barrie.ca.

Monetary donations to help those affected are being accepted by the Salvation Army:

Information for Impacted Residents

Highlighted Update: On July 29, the Government of Ontario announced its Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians program has been activated in parts of Barrie. Please refer to Financial Assistance below for detail.

General information for residents directly impacted by the tornado:

Cleanup Information

Item Disposal

The City had provided bins to help expedite the cleanup due to the volume of debris; the majority of bins were removed on Monday, July 26.

City crews continue to go through the neighbourhoods and pickup tornado debris as long as it is curbside until Friday August 6. In addition, a bin continues to be made available for use in Coronation Park, also until the August 6.

Insurance companies should also be organizing for the disposal of debris. Please check with your insurance carrier to coordinate. 

Tree Debris

Tree chipping for debris that was curbside occurred on July 26 and 27. The contractor only removed tree debris that was at the curb.  

Property Status & Access    

Orders indicating status of affected homes are 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.

See FAQs from the Building Department

Utilities (Hydro, Water, Gas) & Streetlights

Please be wary of scammers. Alectra crews were notified of scammers posing as Alectra employees going door-to-door asking residents for money to inspect their home. This is NOT Alectra, please be cautious and notify local law enforcement (Barrie Police Service Non-Emergency Line: 705-725-7025) if you encounter these fraudsters.

Hydro

Service is restored where safe. Contact information for impacted customers with questions or concerns:

Water

Some areas that were damaged may have water turned off in their homes. If you are returning home and need your water turned back on or have questions about water service, please call 705-726-4242 (press 0 if after-hours).

Gas

As of July 18, Enbridge Gas restored natural gas service to all homes and businesses  where it was safe to do so. Impacted customers with questions or concerns can call 1-866-763-5427.

If your property is deemed safe and you are ready to move in and require gas service to be turned on, please contact Mike Sangregorio directly at Mike.Sangregorio@enbridge.com, 705-739-5211 (office), or 905-866-9564 (cell).

Streetlights

Work is ongoing. Many poles were damaged and need to be replaced, and many of the actual power connections are not working. Alectra has commenced work along with our electrical contractor on getting these operational. There is no defined timeline for expected completion of this work, but it is a high priority and work will continue until they can get everything working.

Financial Assistance

Property Taxes

Homes that have Unsafe Orders may receive a credit for a portion of the 2021 property taxes, following an adjustment to the assessed value of the property as calculated by MPAC. The City’s Finance Department will reach out to the affected residents directly.

Building Permit Fees

As residents begin to rebuild, the City will waive all building permit fees for homes affected by the tornado.

Provincial Disaster Recovery Assistance

On July 29, the Government of Ontario announced that its Disaster Recovery Assistance has been activated for eligible homeowners, tenants, small owner-operated businesses and farms, and not-for-profit organizations within parts of our municipal boundary that were most affected by the tornado. The application deadline for this program is Friday, November 26, 2021.

Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians (DRAO) is a provincial program designed to help people affected by natural disasters get back on their feet. The program provides assistance for emergency expenses and costs to repair or replace essential property. It is not a replacement for insurance.

If you are interested in submitting an application or learning more about this provincial program, please visit ontario.ca/disasterassistance for program guidelines, frequently asked questions, application forms and more. Additional resource: DRAO Info Sheet & Questionnaire | Barrie Tornado.

Please note that this is a program run by the province. If you need help with your application or have questions please write directly to the province at disasterassistance@ontario.ca or contact the information line at 1-877-822-0116.

Short-Term Rental Assistance

Barrie & District Association of Realtors is working with the Red Cross to match short-term rentals with families who have been displaced by the tornado. Please email info@bdar.ca for assistance.

Documentation Replacement    

Service Ontario is offering no-cost replacement for select documentation for those affected by the tornado. Please bring any identification or documentation that you may have available to prove ownership (e.g. licence plate number, insurance, Vehicle Identification Number) or application (e.g. account access) to a Service Ontario location. If you have no documentation, please go to a Service Ontario location and they will do their best to assist you.

Please email Service Barrie at ServiceBarrie@barrie.ca to request replacement waterfront parking passes.

Additional Resources

Tornado assistance line: 705-728-8442

Ontario Ontario SPCA and Humane Society offers support for anyone who needs temporary housing or food for their animal: 310-SPCA (7722). 

The 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. 

Ontario 211, Community and Social Services: call 2-1-1 or visit infobarrie.cioc.ca

Canadian Mental Health Association Simcoe County: cmhastarttalking.ca

Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868

Victim Services: 705-725-7025 ext. 2120. After-hours: 1-866-923-3938

Do not enter any homes unless deemed safe by City Building Officials. The City's Building Department has prepared a short FAQ guide:

Why is the Building Department involved and what do I need to do?

The tornado has created extensive damage to many of the houses in the area which may have compromised the structural integrity of the buildings.

The Building Department’s role is to ensure that these buildings are safe prior to being reoccupied.

Unsafe orders have been issued and 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.

The number of buildings determined to be unsafe may change as more detailed information becomes available regarding damage to structures. If an order has not been posted on your house, and you think it may be unsafe, please contact us and Building Department staff will investigate (contact info below).

Damage from the tornado may extend beyond what you can visibly see. The tornado has imposed loads on the buildings in excess of what it was designed for. We recommend an evaluation by your insurance company if you are concerned, even if an unsafe order has not been issued.

Temporary support may be required to provide immediate protection if the damage is significant. These immediate temporary repairs do not require a building permit, however, should be done under the supervision of a Professional Structural Engineer.

Please contact us if you have questions or need links to resources:

When do I need to get a report from an Engineer?

A report from a Professional Engineer is required when your building has sustained structural damage or if you have received an Unsafe Order from the Building Department.

Why was an order issued on my property?

An Order is a legal document that the Building Department is required to issue when the building is determined to be unsafe.

What do I do if an unsafe order has been issued on my property?

Do not enter the building until you are told it is safe to do so.

A Professional Engineer will need to assess the damages to the property.

When is a building permit NOT required for repairs to my building?

Temporary emergency repairs

When only shingles, siding, soffits, windows, or roof sheathing less than 1​0m2 are being replaced with equivalent materials.

Who can I contact if I need more information?  

Tornado Assistance Line: 705-728-8442 (ask for Building Department, tornado support)

Email: building.official@barrie.ca

Phone calls and emails will be returned ASAP. 

We are working over the weekend to ensure you have the support you need.

Who can I call for repairs?

The first and best choice for repairs is to contact your insurance company. If this is not possible, engage the services of a professional contractor or restoration company experienced in this type of work.

 

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