Sioux Narrows-Nestor Falls declares state of emergency following storm

Press release

The Township of Sioux Narrows – Nestor Falls declared a state of emergency on the morning of July 18, 2022.

An emergency was declared due to a super cell storm and possible tornado damages at Nestor Falls. Significant damages to property and downed trees were sustained during the early morning hours of July 18, 2022. No known injuries have been reported.

The Township of Sioux Narrows – Nestor Falls activated their Emergency Operations Centre on the morning of July 18 to coordinate communications with all available municipal personnel, volunteer Fire Fighters, the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre and the Ontario Provincial Police.

Available municipal personnel have been actively engaged at Caliper Lake Provincial Park, clearing roadways and evacuating approximately 50 campers, as well as ensuring that the road past the park, where several residential properties lie, is open. The hardest hit areas include, but are not limited to: a) Caliper Lake Provincial Park, b) the downtown core of Nestor Falls in and around where Pine (Kakabikitchiwan) Lake flows down into Lake of the Woods, c) in and around the Sabaskong Bay area of Lake of the Woods, including Sabaskong Bay Road, as well as islands in this vicinity.

Hydro One remains active in the area. A widespread power outage came into effect early morning, July 18. Many areas had power restored by the evening of July 18. However, power outages remain in some of the hardest hit areas. No estimated time of restoration to these areas is currently available.

Bell Telephone remains active in the area as well. There are isolated areas without telephone communications. No estimated time of restoration has been provided.

The municipality put in an urgent request on July 18 to a private contractor to assist with clearing Sabaskong Bay Road. Given the extent of the damage, the emergency management team has made an urgent request to the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre to deploy provincial forestry/fire crews to assist residents and businesses at the epicentre. As well, offers received by the municipality from various groups, including regional contractors with heavy equipment, were directed to the businesses and residents in the epicentre zone, in and around Nestor Falls.

We continue to ask for patience as we deploy our limited local resources. As soon as further assistance is made available to the Township, we will work in a coordinated manner to further deploy additional assets, if approved by the Province, to assist with private residents and businesses in need of assistance removing trees.

We cannot express enough how grateful we are for the efforts of our municipal / maintenance / parks staff, volunteer Emergency Management personnel, volunteer Fire department members, Hydro One, the Provincial Forestry Team at Caliper Lake PP, the Ontario Provincial Police, Bell Canada, ACEL Fire department, private businesses and residents who have donated their time/equipment/goods. As well, our hearts go out to all those affected who are coming to terms with this disastrous and devastating event. The Township will work alongside those who are tirelessly cleaning up their properties, businesses, and homes.

Please refer to the Township’s Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/TownshipSNNF for any updated information that becomes available to us.