Published on January 15, 2014
Winds were strong enough on Wednesday to knock over one of the A&W signs in downtown Prince Albert, which came tumbling down in the early evening, falling away from the building.
Herald photo by Tyler Clarke
Published on January 15, 2014
A motorist waits at the intersection at 15th Street East and First Avenue East as a broken traffic light sits on the ground. The wind broke the molding where the light attaches to the pole.
Herald photo by Jason Kerr
With temperatures peaking at 7 C, it would have been a wonderful day for skiing, if not for heavy winds forcing the city to close the Kinsmen Ski Hill.
Contacted after its scheduled 4 p.m. opening, calls to the log cabin went straight to voice mail, which noted that the hill was forced to close for the day.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôve got some trees down and the wind‚Äôs ripping really hard,‚ÄĚ the voice mail noted.
‚ÄúWe actually have a number of trees and branches around the whole community that have been down due to the wind, so we have multiple priorities, now,‚ÄĚ interim community services director Jody Boulet explained.
Equipment at the Prince Albert municipal airport measured wind speeds that peaked at 107 km/h.
Although he was unable to say by late afternoon how many trouble spots downed trees had created in Prince Albert, Boulet noted, ‚ÄúCrews have been busy.‚ÄĚ
With more trouble spots than there are people to deal with them, Boulet said that they‚Äôre tackling the ones that pose the greatest hazard or threat, first.
‚ÄúFor sure, roadways and access routes, we want to make sure they‚Äôre clear of any limbs or trees or any debris ‚Ä¶ or areas that could be a risk to properties,‚ÄĚ he said.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôve had a few inquiries to that effect so far today, so crews have been busy.‚ÄĚ
By late afternoon, Boulet said that he was not aware of any damage to private property, although city operations manager Alain Trudel noted that civic property had sustained some damage.
We actually have a number of trees and branches around the whole community that have been down due to the wind, so we have multiple priorities, now Jody Boulet
‚ÄúI was just talking with our transportation manager, and basically there are only a couple (traffic) lights that have got damaged in the wind, which I‚Äôm sure (crews) are out and about repairing,‚ÄĚ he said.
With civic crews‚Äô priorities scattered throughout the city, on Wednesday, Boulet was unable to provide a timeline of when the Kinsmen Ski Hill might re-open.
‚ÄúThe weather‚Äôs going to be very favourable for using the hill, so we want to make sure we have it back in action as soon as we can,‚ÄĚ he said.
Boulet said that his office will have a better idea on Thursday of whatever windstorm damage the city sustained, as well as a timeline for the ski hill‚Äôs re-opening.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôre continuing to just encourage the public, if they do have any incidents ‚Ä¶ it never hurts to call it in so we can make sure that we can respond.‚ÄĚ
Environment Canada noted in a media release that Wednesday‚Äôs heavy winds were associated with a powerful storm near The Pas, Man., and were expected to persist throughout the day.