Flooding forces northern Ont. towns to declare state of emergency

Several small northern Ontario communities have declared a state of emergency due to flash flooding in the area.

One dead in Thessalon, after motorcycle falls into sinkhole

Several small northern Ontario communities have declared a state of emergency due to flash flooding in the area.

Provincial police in East Algoma said Tuesday that several roads are closed in the area southeast of Sault Ste. Marie.

Emergency Management Ontario reports Johnson Township, Macdonald, Meredith and Aberdeen Additional (Echo Bay) Township, Municipality of Huron Shores and Plummer Additional Township have declared a state of emergency due to the excess rainfall, which caused major flooding and road washouts.

All secondary roads in the those communities have been closed until further notice.

Motorcyclist falls into sinkhole

OPP report flooding and low visibility are likely to blame for a fatal motorcycle crash in Thessalon on Tuesday.

OPP Inspector Mark Andrews said a 57-year-old man was driving in bad weather on Duff Road close to 7:30 a.m. when he was hurtled into a sinkhole. The driver died of his injuries in hospital. 

Authorities in Algoma and East Algoma remain concerned about the structural integrity of bridges and culverts, especially where there were mudslides.

Many roads in the Algoma and East Algoma areas remain closed due to the flooding. One of the major arteries, Highway 17, is closed at Iron Bridge and Livingstone Creek, due to a washout and is expected to stay that way for two to three days.

Detours are in place.

Meanwhile, a flood warning has been issued for people living near creeks and rivers in the Sault Ste. Marie area. The Conservation Authority there says the ground is saturated, and most watercourses are at bank-level due to Monday night's heavy rainfall.

Vehicle swallowed by sinkhole

Provincial police and emergency crews were kept busy, said Sault Ste. Marie OPP Constable Monique Baker, as road conditions were changing by the hour.

"We have a few highways that have re-opened, we have a few more that have closed. So we’re kind of going back and forth right now. And we have all emergency crews out there. We're working with the townships. We're working with other emergency services."

At Goulais Mission Road at the 2400 block, a vehicle was swallowed into a sinkhole in the roadway.

"The occupants in the vehicle have managed to get themselves out and they have been rescued by emergency personnel. [The] sinkhole ... is approximately 30 feet across, so the road is impassable," Baker said.

School buses across the Sault were cancelled due to flooding. 

For an updated list of road closures from the Ministry of Transportation, click on the link to the left or go to: http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/traveller/trip/road_closures.shtml#Event389849


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