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Torrential rain leads to flooding on Toronto streets and highways

Last Updated Jul 17, 2019 at 2:31 pm EDT

Torrential rains caused flooding on several roadways across the GTA and forced the TTC to close at least one subway station.

Kipling Avenue was closed between Bethridge Road and Belfield Road while a portion of Highway 401 at Kipling was also said to be under water.

As well, sections of Eglinton Avenue at Allen Road and Black Creek Drive were also affected. Both these areas are connected to the Eglinton Crosstown construction project.

The Highway 401 eastbound off ramp at Islington was turned into a swamp as a combination of dirt and water almost completely submerged a number of cars caught in the downpour.

OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt says some drivers have had to abandon their vehicles on the roads because they weren’t able to continue through the water. He says others had to be rescued from their flooded-out cars.

Toronto Fire said it responded to 12 water rescues involving multiple cars between 9:30 and 11:30 a.m.

Flooding was also responsible for closing Highway 401 east- and westbound ramps to Weston Road, the eastbound Highway 401 ramp to Allen Road south and the Highway 427 southbound off ramp to Holiday Drive. As well there were a number of lane restrictions on Highway 401, Highway 400 and Highway 409.

The area of Jane Street at St. Clair Avenue was also flooded with water reaching up to the top of the wheel well on cars travelling in the area.

The TTC was forced to close Jane Station for approximately two hours due to flooding. Shuttle buses were operating in the area between Jane and Runnymede stations until regular service resumed shortly after noon.

Environment Canada said upwards of 60 mm of rainfall was recorded at Pearson Airport during a two hour period between 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. The national weather service says additional showers and thunderstorms were also possible later this afternoon.

The Toronto and Region Conservation Authority is warning that all shorelines, rivers and streams should be considered “hazardous” as the heavy rainfall will result in higher water levels.

“Boardwalks and other pathways along Lake Ontario’s waterfront are dangerous due to the high water levels combined with wind, surge and wave action,” said the TRCA. “Additionally, high water levels in Lake Ontario can result in reduced capacity of streams at river mouths during heavy rainfall events and thunderstorms.”

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