Volume 95, Issue 83

Tuesday, March 12, 2002
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VP forum allows for schmooze-fest

Raging storm flattens Forest City

Cabbies endangered: drivers beaten and robbed

Negotiations begin in Dalhousie strike

Sex without consequences anyone?

Hockey and opera worth puck all

Raging storm flattens Forest City

By Joel Brown
Gazette Staff

Trees may be an environmentalist's best friend, but they were the Forest City's worst enemy when this weekend's storm caused a number of them to fall, causing power outages and havoc around London and the Western community.

As of yesterday, the Fairmount area of London was still without power, said London Hydro spokesperson Nancy Hutton.

Falling trees took out many power lines and caused massive outages just before 6 p.m. on Saturday evening and continuing throughout the night. The power outage left 40,000 London Hydro customers without power, according to Hutton.

In the two hour period after the first outages, police answered in excess of 400 calls relating to the blackouts, said Const. Ryan Holland of the London Police Department.

A number of accidents occurred on campus, triggering numerous alarms and the dispatching of the school's Emergency Response Team, said Const. Wendy McGowan of the University Police Department.

Three trees fell down on Middlesex Drive, blocking pedestrians, cars and London Transit buses for over five hours and forcing traffic to be re-routed to the Talbot intersection, she said.

Plexiglas covering the school map on Lambton Drive was blown out and shattered by the high winds.

At the school's Platts Lane townhouse complex, two parked vehicles suffered roof and window damage because of fallen trees.

"We had to have all on hand to keep it as least destructive as possible," McGowan said.

The McDonald's at the corner of Oxford Street and Wharncliffe Road was forced to close for 21 hours when their power was lost, leaving their store manager, Krista, upset. "It meant we couldn't sell burgers to [students]," she said, refusing to give her last name because of a McDonald's tradition.

The city has set up facilities to address those in urgent need and those who are still without shelter or power, said Jay Stanford, division manager of solid waste for the City of London.

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Copyright The Gazette 2002