Heavy showers affecting portions of the GTA dissipate

A few pockets of heavy showers continue to affect potions of the Greater Toronto Area, but they are slowly weakening, Environment Canada said.

Rain impacted transit service throughout Toronto

The tunnel at King Street West and Atlantic Avenue flooded overnight after heavy rain, but the TTC says regular service on the 504 King streetcar has resumed on Wednesday. Here a streetcar is stuck inside. (Adrian Cheung/CBC)

A few pockets of heavy showers continue to affect portions of Toronto but are slowly weakening, Environment Canada said.

The federal weather agency said the activity should come to an end before midnight.

Earlier on Wednesday the agency issued a special weather statement for Toronto, saying 20 to 40 mm of rain is possible for the city as a warm, humid air mass moves over Southern Ontario. The alert was lifted just after 10 p.m.

With the city already soaked from Tuesday's sudden storm, the added rainfall could cause local pooling and flash flooding, the weather agency says. 

Flight delays, transit issues

Meanwhile, Pearson International Airport tweeted Wednesday afternoon that they were experiencing periods of rain and lightning, which may delay flight operations.

The TTC is advising customers that due to flooding at Sheppard West Station, subway service between Wilson and Finch West stations will continue to be replaced by shuttle buses, resulting in longer than normal travel times.

TTC crews, assisted by Toronto Fire Services, have spent most of the day pumping water from the flooded sections of the station.

"Once clear, electricians and subway crews will inspect and test the equipment that has been under water for several hours," TTC said in a statement, adding crews are working as quickly as possible to restore service.

Sheppard West station flooding was the most serious of several weather-related incidents to impact TTC service today, the agency said. 

Earlier on Wednesday subway service was suspended for about 90 minutes between Bloor and Eglinton stations after storm water contacted a 600v cable causing a small track-level fire, the TTC said.

In a written statement Wednesday afternoon, Mayor John Tory urged Torontonians to continue using extra precautions around the city today and tonight as we continue to experience rainfall."

He also thanked the first responders, emergency response teams and city staff who "worked non-stop" since last night to keep the city safe and secure.

Roadways turn into small rivers

Tuesday evening's heavy rain turned roadways into small rivers and stranded vehicles in pooling water. Underpasses were filled with stormwater, while flooding was also reported in condo parking garages, at least one college and a hospital. 

Toronto police are reporting one road closure due to significant damage from flooding. Jane Street is closed in both directions from Chalkfarm Drive to Wilson Avenue. The closure is expected to last for some time and there is no estimated time for reopening. 
The downtown location of Brooks Brothers, pictured here, closed because of flooding. People were cleaning up inside early Wednesday. (CBC)

George Brown College says it has closed its waterfront campus on Wednesday to non-essential staff, students and all activities because of "extensive flooding" on its main floor and lower levels. The campus will remain closed until Monday.

Humber River Hospital says it has temporarily closed some elevators because of rain damage. Water temporarily affected one MRI suite, its chemotherapy clinic and food court. Crews were up all night dealing with the damage, according to hospital CEO Barb Collins.

Some transit services returning to regular service

Some transit services, however, are now running normally. Regular service has resumed on the UP Express and GO Transit's service to Barrie, according to Anne Marie Aikins, spokesperson for Metrolinx, Ontario's provincial transit agency.

Flooding was reported at Union Station on Tuesday night.

At Toronto's Billy Bishop Airport on Tuesday night, water pooled in the parking lot. The weather station at airport reported that 72 millimetres of rain fell there, of which 51 mm fell in one hour, according to Environment Canada.

The airport is reporting a few delayed flights after the storm and said the weather may affect operations on Wednesday.

As for Toronto Hydro, it reported 16,000 customers in North York were without power at the peak of the storm but power has since been restored. 

About 50 customers were without power in two areas — near River Street, Queen Street East and Gerrard Street East, and near Davenport Road and Symington Avenue — for most of the day Wednesday.

But late this afternoon, Toronto Hydro said power should now be restored to all customers.

Police rescue people in elevator, cars

The weather led to a frightening situation for at least two men who had to be rescued from an elevator that was rapidly-filling with water, as well as several motorists who were stuck as their cars were submerged.

Police said the elevator was stuck in the basement of a commercial building in the city's north end, close to Jane Street and St. Clair Avenue West, when water began rising.

The water level had risen to six feet with only one foot of air space for the men to breathe. The men stood on handrails in the elevator to keep their heads above water. One man suffered a hand injury in the incident.

As well, officers pulled people from vehicles stuck in water at two locations — Dovercourt Road and Dupont Street, and Lower Simcoe Street and Bremner Boulevard.


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