OTTAWA — The Ontario government announced nearly $1.6 million in funding for the tornado recovery efforts in the Ottawa region.
The funding will be used to assist non-governmental organizations involved in removing debris from private residences, support tree removal on private and commercial properties and supplement Public Works and Forestry’s capacity to remove debris, said a Sept. 29 statement.
Provincial officials are working to support the City of Ottawa’s Recovery Task Force as well as the city’s Community Support Centres. The province’s Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians program, designed to help people affected by natural disasters, was activated on Sept. 22, and has now determined eligible neighbourhoods for applications.
“I witnessed firsthand the aftermath of the tornado and storm in the Ottawa area,” Premier Doug Ford said in the statement. “I am deeply thankful to the first responders, hydro crews, the municipal emergency management staff and officials, and the countless volunteers who have worked tirelessly to help the thousands of people who have lost so much. I will ensure the province uses every tool at its disposal to help the people of Ottawa recover and rebuild.”
Twin tornadoes tore through Ottawa and across the Ottawa River to Gatineau, Que., on Sept. 21. On the Ottawa side, 51 homes were destroyed or severely damaged. The twister — with winds that reached 265 kilometres per hour — ripped through Dunrobin, about 35 kilometres west of the downtown area, before moving on to Gatineau. Environment Canada said that at almost the same time, a second, slightly less powerful, twister touched down in the south Ottawa neighbourhood of Arlington Woods.
— With files from the Canadian Press