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Baseball tournament in Leaside girl’s memory among weekend events

PATRICIA D'CUNHA AND AMBER LEBLANC | posted Friday, Aug 26th, 2016

As summer winds down, many of the events this weekend are being held outdoors to soak up every moment of what the season has to offer. From a special baseball tournament to an arts and crafts fair to a cider festival, there’s plenty to do for those who wish the warmth would never end.

But keep in mind, there is a partial subway closure due to ongoing track work this weekend.


Events

Remembering Georgia Walsh

It’s going to be an emotional weekend in Leaside. The family of six-year-old Georgia Walsh – who was struck and killed by a van on July 16, 2014 – is holding its second annual ‘Georgia Walsh Memorial All-Star Games‘ to raise money to revitalize Trace Manes Park, which was one of her favourite spots.

“Cheer on young baseball all-stars playing the game that Georgia loved,” a poster for the event reads.

The poster for the Georgia Walsh Memorial Games, which take place on Aug. 27, 2016. Photo via rememberinggeorgiawalsh.com.

The poster for the Georgia Walsh Memorial Games, which take place on Aug. 27, 2016. Photo via rememberinggeorgiawalsh.com.

 

Saturday’s event is a family day of baseball and activities including face painting, inflatable slides, games and a BBQ. All proceeds go to the Playground Project, in honour of Georgia.

Muslimfest
A huge festival takes over Mississauga’s Celebration Square on Saturday and Sunday.

Muslimfest, which showcases the best in Muslim art and entertainment, will feature non-stop concerts with over 50 artists from around the world, a multicultural bazaar and a carnival for children.

The 12th annual festival aims to share Muslim culture with the broader community through through art, humour and entertainment.

Admission is free all weekend. You’re encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item, which are being collected for Syrians who have just come to Canada.

Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Fair
Bloor Street West, between Dufferin Street and the Christie Pits, will turn into an arts and crafts hub on Saturday, turning it into one of the city’s largest gathering of artists, artisans and musicians.

One of the vendors at the Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Fair in 2015. Photo via Facebook/BloorcourtBIA.

One of the vendors at the Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Fair in 2015. Photo via Facebook/BloorcourtBIA.

 

Vendors will showcase ceramics, woven fabrics, jewelry and vintage products, while local businesses will host sidewalk sales. There will also be plenty of patio space at restaurants on the stretch to grab lunch and listen to live music.

The event, which is free, runs from noon to 10 p.m. The section of Bloor will be closed during the event.

Cityfest
Some may argue that large-scale condo developments take the spirit out of the neighbourhood, but this outdoor party brings the community back to the people.

Residents who will live near CityPlace, a condo complex bordered by Lake Shore Boulevard West, Bathurst Street, Front Street and Spadina Avenue, will celebrate their neighbourhood at the third-annual event at Canoe Landing Park on Saturday.

Toronto Cider Festival
There have been a lot of beer festivals in the city this year, but now it’s time for a day completely dedicated to an underrated but delicious beverage.

The Toronto Cider Festival is taking over Yonge-Dundas Square for two sessions on Saturday. People can sample 40 different ciders from around the world and then kick back in Muskoka chairs with a snack from a food truck. All the while, there will be live entertainment. Tickets are available here.

Remember, please don’t drink and drive.

Coconut Festival
It’s a product that’s all the rage and it will be celebrated Saturday at David Pecaut Square. The third annual Coconut Festival, highlights what organizers call “one of the greatest fruits in the world.”

It will feature all things coconut, live cultural performances, local food vendors, artists, a fashion show and stations where people can learn more about coconut health and wellness. Admission is free.

The event is sponsored by CocoVie Coconut Spread, and GayLea Coconut Whipped Cream.

TTC and road closures

Line 1 closure
You’ve come to expect this almost every weekend, so by now you are well-prepared. Subway service will be off-limits on Line 1 (Yonge-University-Spadina) between Lawrence and Bloor-Yonge stations due to track work. Shuttle buses will be running.

For those with plans over the Labour Day long weekend, you will have to contend with a subway closure on Line 2 (Bloor-Danforth) between St. George and Pape stations as TTC crews conduct work on the Prince Edward Viaduct. Shuttle buses will be operating.

Road closures for events

Toronto Tamil Festival: Markham Road between McNicoll and Passmore avenues will be closed from 10 a.m. on Friday to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday.

Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Fair: Bloor Street West, from Dufferin Street to Montrose Avenue, will be closed from 7 a.m. on Saturday to 11:59 p.m.

Leslieville Beerfest: Dundas Street East will be closed from Logan to Carlaw avenue from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday.

Road work

Ongoing work

Shuter Street, from Yonge to Sherbourne streets, will be reduced to one lane in both directions until Oct. 28 for watermain replacement and road work.

Drivers will encounter lane reductions on Bayview Avenue from Rosedale Valley Road to Pottery Road to build a multi-use trail and for other road work. The closure is expected to last until Nov. 30.

Gerrard Street, from University Avenue to Elizabeth Street, is reduced to one lane until Oct. 15 for watermain and other road work.

Richmond Street West is reduced to one lane of traffic between Church and York streets until Nov. 30 for TTC track work, watermain replacement, and road and sidewalk repairs.

One lane of Queen Street West between Spadina Avenue and Bathurst Street is closed in both directions for watermain replacement and reconstruction work until around Oct. 8.

Three dead in Scarborough after apparent crossbow attack

Nicole Thompson, The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Aug 26th, 2016

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Three people suffering from what appeared to be wounds from a crossbow died in Toronto on Thursday in an incident that rocked an otherwise quiet neighbourhood in the city’s east end.

Police said an injured fourth person — a 35-year-old man — was taken into custody, but few other details of what happened were released.

The victims were found in the driveway of a bungalow near Eglinton Avenue East and Markham Road by officers who responded to a stabbing report around 1 p.m.

“Indications were that (a) person had been stabbed — their injuries were fairly serious,” Const. David Hopkinson said. “When officers arrived, they found that person and two others suffering from injuries from what we believe to be a crossbow bolt.”

Three people — two men and a woman — were pronounced dead at the scene, police said. A crossbow was found nearby on the floor.

Police, who immediately swarmed the area, were not looking for any suspects, Hopkinson said.

About four hours after the incident, police said there was a link between the deaths and a suspicious package found in downtown Toronto. They said the downtown scene, which was near a building housing a daycare, was declared safe by 5 p.m.

In the east-end neighbourhood of Scarborough, however, streets remained blocked off Thursday evening as police continued to investigate.

Vijaya Cruz, whose house backs on to the bungalow where the incident is believed to have taken place, said she was home with her husband Thursday afternoon when he heard a commotion.

“My husband said he heard some screaming, someone was screaming there,” she said. “Then he said he heard ‘bang, bang, bang’ noise, and then someone was saying ‘calm down.’”

Cruz said she soon saw the flashing lights of a fire truck which was among the emergency crews that responded to the scene. Police later knocked on her door and told her three people had died in an incident involving a crossbow.

Cruz said she had seen a couple in the bungalow’s backyard on occasion, but said she didn’t know much about them.

“I see them working in the garden, a man and a woman, I see them with a wheelbarrow, cleaning up the yard,” she said. “They don’t talk.”

Faiza Siddiqui, who lives on an adjoining street next to a park, said the incident was disturbing.

“It’s scary because this park is always full with kids,” she said. “You don’t hear about people being killed by crossbows, especially in the city. I don’t know why you would need that in the city, have it around the house.”

Sadiya Haque, who also lives nearby, added that the neighbourhood was typically a tranquil one, with many seniors living on the street where the incident took place.

Dale Lounsbury, who sells crossbows at a sporting goods store in Waterloo, Ont., and owns one himself, said they can be dangerous due to their power and accuracy. But they are not suited to firing multiple shots in quick succession, he said.

“Crossbows are not a rapid-fire instrument at all,” Lounsbury said. “I can probably fire two shots a minute, maybe three.”

Unlike guns, buying a crossbow does not require a licence.

In December 2010, a man fired a bolt into his father’s back at a Toronto public library branch in another crossbow incident that captured the city’s attention. In that case, Zhou Fang then crushed his 52-year-old father’s skull with a hammer.

Fang was initially charged with first-degree murder but the prosecution accepted a plea of second-degree murder after considering that he was the victim of long-term abuse at the hands of his father.

He was sentenced to life in prison in 2012.

Union representing postal workers issues strike notice

Terry Pedwell, The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Aug 26th, 2016

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Labour Minister MaryAnn Mihychuk said Canada Post and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers will begin working with a special mediator Friday morning in the face of a union threat of job action.

“In an attempt to push the two parties, help them facilitate a mediated, negotiated settlement, we’ve got a special mediator coming in who will start working with both parties tomorrow morning,” Mihychuk said Thursday evening in Saguenay, Que., where she was attending the Liberal summer caucus retreat.

“We hope to have significant resolution by Sunday,” Mihychuk said.

The union representing nearly 51,000 employees issued a 72-hour notice of job action Thursday, accusing the Crown corporation of forcing a labour dispute.

It was not immediately clear whether the action would result in a disruption of mail and parcel deliveries, something that – if it does happen – could come as early as next week.

The union said the notice, delivered to management just hours before a strike mandate was set to expire, “listed anticipated job actions” but stopped short of a full-blown walkout. The union hasn’t said exactly what actions it was planning.

The notice puts postal carriers in a legal strike position by Aug. 28.

In a statement, CUPW national president Mike Palecek said Canada Post forced the union’s hand by refusing to accept a request from the federal labour minister to continue negotiations under a 24-hour deadline extension with the help of a special mediator.

“This was an eleventh-hour intervention from the government to avoid a dispute and of course we said, ‘Yes,’” said Palecek.

“From the outset, our goal has been a negotiated collective agreement without service disruptions. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Canada Post, whose president and CEO Deepak Chopra refused the minister’s request.”

But a spokesman for the agency said that was not the case.

“Canada Post will fully co-operate in the (mediation) process,” Jon Hamilton said in an email.

“We hope that the assistance of a neutral third party will help both parties address the real challenges facing the postal service caused by declining mail volumes and increasing pension obligations.”

The union’s strike mandate was set to expire at midnight.

Had it expired, Canada Post employees would likely have had to vote to approve another mandate, a costly process that could take up to two months to complete.

CUPW had asked the agency to allow an extension of the mandate, a request that was refused as “inappropriate.”

The two sides had been in sometimes bitter negotiations for more than nine months but were still far apart on key issues, including pay equity for rural carriers and proposed changes to the Canada Post pension plan, despite days of intensive talks that carried through last weekend.

CUPW offered a glimmer of hope Thursday that a strike could be averted, saying it’s still prepared to talk.

“We are still willing to withdraw our notice if Canada Post agrees to an extension,” said Palecek.

The Crown corporation also has the option to lock out workers.

A pay equity issue pitting rural and urban carriers against each other and a proposed move from a defined benefit pension plan to a defined contribution plan for new employees are the main stumbling blocks in the dispute.

The union claims rural postal workers earn, on average, nearly 30 per cent less than city carriers.

Other issues revolve around part-time and temporary work, staffing improvements and the possible closure of nearly 500 retail postal outlets that could result in the elimination of up to 1,200 full-time jobs that are currently protected.

Although Mihychuk hoped the latest effort would bring results over the weekend, she cautioned that it might not work.

“Canadians need to get prepared for a potential work stoppage,” she said.

“I think that’s the reality.”

Two years after innocent bystander shot dead, police to release more information

CityNews | posted Friday, Aug 26th, 2016

jelena

Two years after an innocent bystander was shot dead outside of a downtown nightclub, Toronto police are expected to release more information in the case.

Jelena Loncar, 32, had just finished a bartending shift at Hunters Landing restaurant on Aug. 26, 2014. She was standing outside C Lounge on Wellington Street, just west of Spadina Avenue, when she was hit by a bullet around 3 a.m.

She died later in hospital.

At the time, police said the man they believed to be the intended target was shot six times while running toward Spadina. Police said he was co-operating with the investigation.

About 20 minutes before the shooting, three cars had been in the parking lot of the House of Lancaster strip club on The Queensway when there was an exchange of gunfire.

The drivers went straight from there to Wellington Street, police said.

Police are expected to release more information as well as a reward on Friday.


Related stories:

Security video released of August shooting outside downtown nightclub

Jelena Loncar’s sister overcome by grief during police update

Police release security video from fatal downtown Toronto shooting

Canadian among those killed in Italy earthquake

Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Aug 26th, 2016

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At least one Canadian is confirmed to have died and another was injured during this week’s devastating earthquake in central Italy.

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion revealed the news in a statement, though Global Affairs Canada did not identify either of the Canadians, citing privacy concerns.

“I was extremely saddened to see the tragic loss of life following the devastating earthquake in central Italy, which now includes the death of a Canadian citizen,” Dion said. “We share in the grief of the lives cut short by this terrible event.”

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I also extend my condolences now to the family and friends of the Canadian life lost in the quake.”


Related stories:

Aftershocks rattle Italy quake zone; death toll rises to 250

Italian-Canadian community planning fundraising after deadly earthquake


At least 250 people were killed and countless more injured when a 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck central Italy on Tuesday night.

Dozens of people are believed to be still trapped beneath the rubble in the affected area, where rescuers are frantically working to save them.

Officials say there were 3,876 Canadians registered with Global Affairs Canada as being in Italy, with 72 in the areas affected by the earthquake. The numbers; however, are likely low as many Canadians never register with the department while travelling abroad.

Dion said he had spoken with his Italian counterpart to express Canada’s condolences and support, and officials said the government is waiting for any request for assistance.

“Canada continues to stand behind the people of Italy during this difficult period,” Dion said.

Tuesday’s earthquake was the deadliest to strike Italy since 2009, when another temblor killed more than 300 people.

Budget-friendly essentials for a university dorm room

BT Toronto | posted Thursday, Aug 25th, 2016

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It’s back-to school season! As September rolls around, many young adults across Canada are heading to university. This time of year is not only the start of classes, but for many students the start of ‘dorm living’.

Many students want to spice up their ‘drabby and small’ dorm room, and turn it into something cozy and comfortable. However, a lack of design ideas and a small budget might get in the way. Luckily, designer Shai DeLuca-Tamasi assures many ways that students can jazz up their dorm room with a small budget and helpful designer tips.

Below are a staple items to turn a dorm room from ‘drab’ to ‘fab’.. all while not breaking the bank!

Storage & organization

With more students being crammed in student housing each year, students tend to have little space in their dorm rooms. Additional space is needed if a student wants to feel comfortable – remember, students will spend a majority of their university years inside their dorm. Shai recommends looking at different style boxes in different shapes and colours that can be placed around the room – whether under the bed, on a table top, or on a shelf. These boxes (depending on the size) can be used to store everything from clothing, jewelry, books, and snack items.

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Table top items

Many students will be using their limited amount of ‘table space’ or desk space to read, study, and eat their meals. Shai recommends a few key pieces for this area of the dorm room. First, a bright table lamp is essential. Find a lamp that will won’t cause strain on the eyes during those late night homework sessions. Secondly, a digital or analog clock. This can help students keep track of time better – especially when a distracting phone is not close by. Lastly, invest in some decor pieces like small plants, rocks, and paperweights that will add charm and identity to the table area.

Kitchen items

Small appliances for cooking can make a student’s dorm experience much better, especially when craving late night food. Shai recommends student invest in a small grinder – they can be used for anything from chopping chickpeas for hummus, or blending fruit for delicious smoothies. This might offset the infamous ‘Freshman 15’ weight gain as a bonus.

Keep in mind: Most students living in a dorm are sharing a common kitchen with other students. Make sure items remain small and compact, and omit very little noise.

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Decor items

Many dorms have a ‘no painting’ policy, which makes it hard to give a dorm room a pop of colour. Luckily, a student can brighten up their dorm room with many removable decor pieces. 70’s decor is coming back as the latest trend, so the use of wood, coppers and golds, and novelty pieces are all trendy choices.

Shai also recommends a diffuser that will keep the dorm room air fresh and odour free. Diffusers can be refilled with various scents such as lavender and peppermint, good for sleep and the other being good for awaking the senses. Versatility of scents makes a diffuser a great investment.

Check out Shai DeLuca-Tamasi’s ‘Dorm Finds for Less’ segment on Breakfast Television below.

Close to 6,000 strollers being recalled due to safety issue

The Canadian Press | posted Thursday, Aug 25th, 2016

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Health Canada has recalled almost 6,000 strollers sold under the brand name Safety 1st.

The Step n Go Travel Systems strollers were manufactured in China and distributed by Mississauga-based Dorel Juvenile Canada.

The federal agency says a tray folding mechanism can partially disengage on one side when an infant car seat is attached, posing a fall hazard.

Health Canada says about 5,787 of the affected strollers were sold in Canada between May 2015 and June 2016. Dorel Juvenile Canada has eight consumer reports about the trays disengaging but there are no reports of any injuries.

Health Canada says anyone who owns one of these strollers should stop using it with a car seat attached and contact the company for a free repair kit.

Three models are affected, identified as 01451CCYA, 01451CDGI and 01451CDGJ. The numbers are on a sewn-in label at the back of the stroller.

The recall also covers some 20,000 units which were sold in the United States.

Rescuers search for survivors in Italy quake that killed 247

Frances D'Emilio and Nicole Winfield, The Associated Press | posted Thursday, Aug 25th, 2016

0825italyquake

Rescue crews raced against time Thursday looking for survivors from the earthquake that levelled three towns in central Italy, but the death toll rose to 247 and Italy once again anguished over trying to secure its medieval communities built on seismic lands.

Dawn broke over the rolling hills of central Lazio and Le Marche regions after a night of uninterrupted search efforts. Aided by sniffer dogs and audio equipment, firefighters and rescue crews using their bare hands pulled chunks of cement, rock and metal apart from mounds of rubble where homes once stood searching for signs of life.

One area of focus was the Hotel Roma in Amatrice, famous for the Amatriciana bacon and tomato pasta sauce that brings food lovers to this medieval hilltop town each August for its food festival.

Firefighters search amid the rubble of a collapsed building in Amatrice, Italy, after a powerful earthquake on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Alessandra Tarantino
Firefighters search amid the rubble of a collapsed building in Amatrice, Italy, after a powerful earthquake on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Alessandra Tarantino

 

Amatrice’s mayor had initially said 70 guests were in the crumbled hotel ahead of this weekend’s festival, but rescue workers later halved that estimate after the owner said most guests managed to escape.

Firefighters’ spokesman Luca Cari said that one body had been pulled out of the hotel rubble just before dawn but that the search continued there and elsewhere, even as 460 aftershocks rattled the area after the magnitude 6 temblor struck at 3:36 a.m. on Wednesday.

“We’re still in a phase that allows us to hope we’ll find people alive,” Cari said, noting that in the 2009 earthquake in nearby L’Aquila a survivor was pulled out after 72 hours.

Worst affected by the quake were the tiny towns of Amatrice and Accumoli near Rieti, 100 kilometres northeast of Rome, and Pescara del Tronto, 25 kilometres further east.

This aerial photo shows the historical part of the town of Amatrice, central Italy, after an earthquake on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Gregorio Borgia
This aerial photo shows the historical part of the town of Amatrice, central Italy, after an earthquake on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Gregorio Borgia

 

Italy’s civil protection agency reported the death toll had risen to 247 early Thursday with at least 264 others hospitalized. Most of the 190 dead were in Amatrice and Accumuli and their nearby hamlets.

“From here everyone survived,” said Sister Mariana, one of three nuns and an elderly woman who survived the quake that pancaked half of her Amatrice convent.

“They saved each other, they took their hands even while it was falling apart, and they ran, and they survived.”

She said that others from another part of the convent apparently didn’t make it: Three other nuns and four elderly women.

The civil protection agency set up tent cities around the affected towns to accommodate the homeless, 1,200 of whom took advantage of the offer to spend the night, civil protection officials said Thursday. In Amatrice, some 50 elderly and children spent the night inside a local sports facility.

“It’s not easy for them,” said civil protection volunteer Tiziano De Carolis, helping to care for about 350 homeless in Amatrice.

“They have lost everything, the work of an entire life, like those who have a business, a shop, a pharmacy, a grocery store and from one day to another they discovered everything they had was destroyed.”

As the search effort continued, the soul-searching began once again as Italy confronted the effects of having the highest seismic hazard in Western Europe, some of its most picturesque medieval villages, and anti-seismic building codes that aren’t applied to old buildings and often aren’t respected when new ones are built.

Rescuers search through debris following an earthquake in Pescara Del Tronto, Italy, on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Andrew Medichini
Rescuers search through debris following an earthquake in Pescara Del Tronto, Italy, on Aug. 24, 2016. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Andrew Medichini

 

“In a country where in the past 40 years there have been at least eight devastating earthquakes … the only lesson we have learned is to save lives after the fact,” columnist Sergio Rizzo wrote in Thursday’s Corriere della Sera. “We are far behind in the other lessons.”

Experts estimate that 70 per cent of Italy’s buildings aren’t built to anti-seismic standards. After every major quake, proposals are made to improve, but they often languish in Italy’s thick bureaucracy, funding shortages and the huge scope of trying to secure thousands of ancient towns and newer structures built before codes were passed or after the codes were in effect but in violation of them.

In recent quakes, some of these more modern buildings have been the deadliest: the university dormitory that collapsed in the 2009 L’Aquila quake, killing 11 students; the elementary school that crumbled in San Giuliano di Puglia in 2002, killing 26 children – the town’s entire first-grade class. In some cases, the anti-seismic building standards have been part of the problem, including using reinforced cement for roofs that are then too heavy for weak walls when quakes strike.

Premier Matteo Renzi, visiting the quake-affected zone Wednesday, promised to rebuild “and guarantee a reconstruction that will allow residents to live in these communities, to relaunch these beautiful towns that have a wonderful past that will never end.”

While the government is already looking ahead to reconstruction, rescue workers on the ground still had days and weeks of work ahead of them. In hard-hit Pescara del Tronto, firefighter Franco Mantovan said early Thursday that crews knew of three residents still under the rubble, but in a hard-to-reach area.

In the evening there, about 17 hours after the quake struck, firefighters pulled a 10-year-old girl alive from a crumbled home.

“You can hear something under here. Quiet, quiet,” one rescue worker said, before soon urging her on: “Come on, Giulia, come on, Giulia.” Cheers broke out when she was pulled out.

But there were wails when bodies emerged.

“Unfortunately, 90 per cent we pull out are dead, but some make it, that’s why we are here,” said Christian Bianchetti, a volunteer from Rieti who was working in devastated Amatrice.

The Associated Press’ Nicole Winfield reported from Rome; Trisha Thomas in Pescara del Tronto contributed to this report.

Possible tornado in Windsor area injures three, damages homes

The Canadian Press and News staff | posted Thursday, Aug 25th, 2016

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More than a dozen homes were damaged and at least three people injured Wednesday evening amid multiple reports of a possible tornado touching down in southwestern Ontario.

Environment Canada said an eyewitness saw a tornado near LaSalle, a bedroom community near Windsor, at about 7:10 p.m. ET.

The national weather agency had issued a tornado warning for Windsor, Leamington and Essex County around 7:28 p.m.

Environment Canada described the storm and possible tornado as a “dangerous and potentially life-threatening situation” before lifting its tornado warning at about 8 p.m.

Geno Olivastri said he walked outside his home and noticed some debris stirring about and the next thing he knew, a funnel cloud was forming.

“I was totally shocked at what I was seeing,” he told CityNews. “It was pretty incredible to see something like that in this area. I don’t recall the last time a tornado has been through the LaSalle area, so I was pretty scary.”

A funnel cloud in the Windsor area on Aug. 24, 2016. Courtesy of Geno Olivastri.

A funnel cloud in the Windsor area on Aug. 24, 2016. Courtesy of Geno Olivastri.

Mark Robinson, a storm chaser with stormhunter.ca, posted images of the damage in Windsor from his Twitter account.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said about 15 homes had been damaged in the storm and that the Red Cross and city agencies were trying to determine how to best help the affected residents.

“We’re just trying to assess what needs to be done to make sure those folks are taken care of by the way of accommodation for this evening.”

Dilkens also told a late night news briefing at a city fire station that three people suffered non-life threatening injuries.

“There were three people transported to hospital … the injuries were reported as not life-threatening, not critical injuries, but they were taken to hospital as a precaution.”

Windsor police were warning residents to avoid the Deziel Dr. area because of damage.

They also reported that hydro poles had been knocked down and there were some live wires as a result.

Lasalle resident Tom Greer said he was on his back porch with his girlfriend watching the storm when he saw funnel clouds forming in the distance.

“I’ve never seen anything like it before,” said Greer, adding that he saw tree branches and other debris swirling around.

He said the area with the most damage was just a kilometre from his home.

“We went for a drive afterward and some houses had the roofs torn off,” Greer said of the homes on Victory Street — the area that he said sustained the most damage.

A spokeswoman for Environment Canada said a team would be in the area early Thursday to assess the damage and confirm whether a tornado had touched down.

Tornadoes touch down in U.S.

South of the border, multiple tornadoes touched down in central Indiana, tearing the roofs off apartment buildings, sending air conditioners falling onto parked cars and cutting power to thousands of people.

The National Weather Service reported a “confirmed large and destructive tornado” hit about 10 miles east of Kokomo, or about 64 kilometres north of Indianapolis.

Police officers in Indianapolis spotted at least two funnel clouds close to the ground in the city just south of Interstate 70, but the department had received no reports of damage, according to Officer Jim Gillespie of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

Local emergency dispatchers said only minor injuries had been reported. Television station WTHR showed images of downed trees and a toppled Starbucks in the area.

With files from The Associated Press

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