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Tornado rips through Angus, Ontario, several homes damaged, no major injuries reported

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Andrea Bagley
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 11:20 AM -

It's a day of clean-up for many southern Ontarians after severe storms ripped through the area Tuesday.

STATE OF EMERGENCY IN ANGUS, ONT. 

Officials have confirmed Ontario's third tornado of the season in Angus, a community about 100 km north of Toronto.


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"A cold front spawned a number of strong to severe thunderstorms Tuesday across southern Ontario," said Environment Canada in the storm summary early Wednesday. "Based upon video evidence, a tornado was observed in Angus near 5:20 pm Tuesday."

The tornado tracked east from Angus to the Mapleview Drive area in Barrie.

"A damage surveyor was on site Tuesday evening, and preliminary estimates suggest the worst damage was low end EF-2 damage in Angus, with estimated wind speeds of near 180 km/h," EC adds.

A survey team will return to the damage track on Wednesday to further assess the nature and severity of the storm. 

Despite damage to about 100 homes, miraculously, no serious injuries were reported. 

"I think it was the right time of day," says fire chief Cynthia Ross Tustin. "People were up, people weren't asleep, young children were out of school and people were able to be aware of what was going on. It was definitely an amazing piece of timing."

"A miracle," added Terry Dowdall, Mayor of Essa Township. "It was really a miracle that nobody was hurt at that time of day." 

According to police officials, some people suffered minor injuries as roofs and walls were sheared off homes.

A state of emergency was declared and it is not yet known when residents will be able to return to their homes. Most were accompanied by police officials to pick up necessary belongings like medication. 

Weather Network Storm Hunter Mark Robinson and meteorologist Jaclyn Whittal were on the scene Tuesday night to speak to home owners who began to pick up the pieces.

DAMAGE ELSEWHERE

The storm also cut power to thousands of residents in southern and eastern Ontario as heavy downpours, gusty winds and frequent downpours were reported.

Hydro crews are asking people to stay away from downed power lines as they could be live and dangerous.

"There were also reports of funnel clouds from trained spotters in the Highway 401 and 402 areas near Woodstock Tuesday afternoon," EC adds. "Another trained spotter reported a possible tornado north of Walkerton and Hanover early Tuesday afternoon, but to date, no damage reports have been received."


RELATED: Visit the Alerts section of the website to keep on top of active weather across the country.


Earlier in the day, four golfers were struck by lightning on a course near Stouffville, north of Toronto.

A 60-year-old man sustained critical injuries while officials say the other three victims are in stable condition.

THUNDERSTORM RISK CONTINUES

Conditions are favourable for the development of severe thunderstorms in southwestern Ontario Wednesday, with the greatest risks being strong winds and heavy rains.

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