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Thousands remain without electricity in wake of powerful wind storm across southern Ontario

Ministry of Labour investigating Mississauga crane that collapsed during wind storm
The crane collapsed as wind gusts reached up to 100 km/hr on Wednesday. As Marianne Dimain reports, clean-up efforts are underway in areas hit by the storm.

TORONTO – Hydro repair crews continue restoring electricity to thousands of homes and businesses affected by a powerful wind storm that raked Ontario Wednesday.

The Hydro One outage map showed about 38,000 outages by early Thursday, down from a peak of about 88,000. Some areas were not expected to have power back until about 5 p.m.

The strong wind also caused multiple outages in western Quebec. Hydro Quebec was dealing with more than 55,000 outages as of 4 a.m., primarily in the suburbs south of Montreal.

READ MORE: Windstorm knocks out power for nearly 100,000 customers in southern Ontario: Hydro One

Environment Canada says wind gusts topped 100 kilometres per hour in Port Colborne on the Lake Erie shoreline. Gusts in the upper 90s were recorded in Hamilton, Brockville and at both the Pearson International and Toronto’s Billy Bishop airports.

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In addition to bringing down trees, signs, tiles and branches, the wind toppled a large construction crane in Mississauga, and a video posted online by The Weather Network shows bricks being ripped off the side of a residence in Ottawa.

VIDEO: Construction crane collapses in Mississauga during wind storm

Construction crane collapses in Mississauga during wind storm
Construction crane collapses in Mississauga during wind storm

Pictures posted on social media show a large KFC bucket and the pole it was mounted on blown to the ground at a Hamilton-area location.

READ MORE: Strong winds cause damage, power outages across the GTA

High wind and blowing snow also caused a number of road closures, including Highway 21 between Kincardine and Port Elgin. It was unclear when that stretch of road would reopen.

Environment Canada said although the wind and blowing snow would diminish Wednesday night, bands of flurries off Lake Huron and Georgian Bay were expected to continue and create hazardous driving conditions as far east as Peterborough.

VIDEO: High winds cause havoc across the GTA

High winds cause havoc across the GTA
High winds cause havoc across the GTA