Barrie tornado: Recap of the devastation after an EF-2 crossed Prince William Way

Friday marks one year since an EF-2 tornado tore through a southern neighborhood of Barrie with winds reaching 210 kilometers per hour, causing more than $100 million in insured losses.

Experts reported that the storm’s track was 12 kilometers long and 600 meters wide.

The powerful storm that hit Prince William Way lasted about 10 to 15 minutes and damaged 110 homes, 71 of which were deemed unsafe, displacing many residents.

“The rebuilding effort has gone very well,” Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman said in a one-year anniversary interview with CP24 on Friday.

However, he noted that some residents still could not return home, with four houses uninhabitable.

“They are still fenced off and damaged,” he said.

The devastating event made it into Environment Canada’s top 10 weather events of 2021.

“It was like a sneak attack,” noted senior climatologist Dave Phillips.

The tornado injured eight people, four of them seriously.

At the time, Lehman said it was “incredible” that no one was killed.

“I am convinced that people knew instinctively that a place of safety had to be found,” he added.

During his interview on Friday, the mayor mentioned the deadly EF-4 that rocked the city in 1984, wiping out homes and claiming the lives of eight people.

“I think people in our city may be more aware of severe weather,” Lehman said. “I think one of the legacies is that people are probably a little more nervous when they see these severe thunderstorm warnings or tornado watches. »

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