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Efforts to restore power after Ontario ice storm now in the home stretch: authorities

Workers from Stacey Electric, a Toronto Hydro subcontractor, work to repair downed power lines around Victoria Park and Denton Avenues in Scarborough, Monday, December 23, 2013, after a severe ice storm hit Toronto.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Galit Rodan
December 29, 2013 - 9:11 AM

TORONTO -- Authorities in Ontario say they’re finally in the home stretch when it comes to restoring power to thousands still grappling with outages more than a week after a devastating ice storm.

Repairs also continue in Quebec and New Brunswick, but a winter storm threatens to derail efforts in the Maritime province, where close to 9,000 homes and businesses remain without heat or electricity.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford says about 6,000 customers are still in the dark in his city — down from 7,400 earlier this morning.

Ford said this weekend there’s “light at the end of the tunnel.”

Toronto Hydro CEO Anthony Haines also says he sees the finish line approaching, adding it could be a matter of hours before everyone is back on the grid.

Today’s predicted high in Toronto is 3 C, the same as Saturday. That has caused ice to break off some tree branches and buildings, bringing down power lines.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says things are largely back to normal outside Toronto.

The Hydro One website shows power is out for about 1,200 homes and businesses elsewhere in Ontario, but a spokeswoman for the utility says those are new outages.

Haines, meanwhile, suggests the effects of the ice storm — particularly on the city’s trees — could be felt long after power is restored.

 pedestrian walks under a tree blocking Wellesley Street East following an ice storm in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 23, 2013.
pedestrian walks under a tree blocking Wellesley Street East following an ice storm in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 23, 2013.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Matthew Sherwood

News from © The Canadian Press, 2013
The Canadian Press

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