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Cleanup underway after tornado hits Ottawa’s south end


The cleanup is underway in Ottawa’s south end after a tornado ripped through the area Thursday evening, damaging homes, properties and trees. 


It’s the third tornado to touch down in Ottawa this summer.


Environment Canada confirmed a tornado hit 9 km northwest of Metcalfe as severe weather moved through the national capital region. Storm chaser Connor Mockett posted video on social media of what he said was a tornado on Albion Road near Rideau Road at 6:47 p.m.


Twelve homes in Findlay Creek were damaged during the storm, mostly with damage to fences, roofs and sheds.


“A lot of wind, a lot of pummel and it happened within seconds,” Frank Scopelliti said Thursday evening as he cleaned up debris. The storm ripped shingles off his home.


“It was unbelievable; one minute you’re OK, one minute you’re not. It was like a wind tunnel going 100 miles an hour. Everything flew over the fence; it was absolutely nuts.”


There have been reports of damage in the south end from Bank Street in Findlay Creek to River Road near Earl Armstrong Road. Photos on social media showed damage to homes, downed trees and a trailer flipped over at a construction site.  Coun. Steve Desroches, the councillor for the area, said roof damage was reported on Escapade Private, Salamander Way, Findlay Creek Drive and Labrador Crescent.


Desroches told Newstalk 580 CFRA’s Ottawa at Work with Patricia Boal that most of the damage is located in Findlay Creek, near Bank Street.


“Some of the homes have been damaged,” Desroches said. “”You can see that the storm blew a lot of debris and insulation onto people’s houses and that; so they’re clearing up.”


On Kelly Farm Drive Thursday evening, roof shingles, street signs, a porta potty and other debris littered the street.


Ottawa fire says the roof was partially ripped off a home on Canyon Walk Drive in Riverside South.


Joanne Robinson saw the storm coming and took cover in the basement of her home on Canyon Walk Drive.


“Once it calmed down, we came back upstairs and came outside; my husband notices the big hole in the house across from us,” Robinson said.


No injuries have been reported. 


Desroches says city staff are working to address any damage to city infrastructure in Riverside South and Findlay Creek.


Western University’s Northern Tornadoes Project will travel to Ottawa today to investigate the damage.


On July 13, two EF1 tornadoes with maximum wind speeds of 155 km/h touched down in Barrhaven, damaging more than 100 homes and properties. The Northern Tornadoes Project said the tornadoes left two paths of damage approximately 1 km and 5 km long.

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