Ontario premier tours tornado-damaged Angus
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne visited Angus today, walking through the areas hardest hit by this week's tornado.
After seeing the devastation first-hand, the premier says it's a miracle no one was seriously hurt or killed.
“It's quite remarkable because this happened at a time when kids were home from school and families were getting ready for super,” she says.
Wynne also had the chance to talk to some of the residents who lived through the terrifying storm, and the big question everyone was looking to have answered is whether the province will provide any disaster relief money.
A powerful high-end EF2 tornado roared through Angus Tuesday, damaging 102 homes. This morning Chad Peacey was able to meet with the premier.
Like many, his house still isn't safe to enter and he's waiting for engineers and insurance adjusters to assess the damage. Peacey doesn't know what will be covered or what's salvageable and hopes the province can provide some support.
“We need the support,” he says. “They have the deep pockets, all the contacts and resources and for a small community like this that counts for a lot.”
Wynne says the province will help and get the more than 300 affected people back into their homes as soon as possible, but wouldn't t say whether any money will be provided.
“It's impossible at this point to assess what the costs are that are not covered by insurance,” she says.
Essa Mayor Terry Dowdall says having the premier tour the damage is a reassurance that Queen’s Park is willing to help.
“We didn't get an exact yes, but to me it looks like the province wants to work with the municipality,” he says. “The big question is what is that exact dollar figure. We have to decide as a municipality what part is ours and what’s the homeowners’ after insurance.”
It still isn't clear when people can return to their homes but the mayor says progress is being made. Crews have started the clean-up.
“There is a lot of debris we need to get cleaned up to make it safe for adjusters to get in there,” Dowdall says.
As for home owners like Jennifer Marshall who are still waiting for answers, meeting with the premier today provides a small glimmer of hope after what's been a devastating and life changing week.
“It definitely makes me feel that there is support there,” she says.
The mayor says all but two households have insurance and by next week the town should have an idea of how much disaster relief money they will be asking for from the province.