Photos such as this, found using the hashtag #ottstorm on Twitter show the aftermath of two tornadoes touching down in Ottawa/Gatineau and surrounding areas Friday September 21, 2018.
Ottawa, ON. For many people, this was probably something you never thought about - but when a tornado touched down in our service area of Ottawa, Ontario - a few people were faced with this very scary scenario.
When winds tore through the Craig Henry/ Arlington Woods communities around dinner time Friday - while many people were still commuting home, many power lines across Greenbank were snapped in half, falling among the cars below them. So what should you do if you are ever in this situation? First and foremost - DO NOT EXIT YOUR VEHICLE. You are fairly protected inside your vehicle, however, stepping outside of your vehicle could change your situation quickly. Touching the outside of the vehicle, or stepping in a puddle, could be the catalyst for severe electrocution. Do not allow anyone near your vehicle unless they are a linesman - someone trained specifically to deal with live power lines. Call for help if you have a cell phone - honk your horn to draw attention to yourself. Roll down your window to tell passers by not to approach the vehicle.
IN CASE OF FIRE, exit your vehicle very carefully with the following tips in mind.
- Do not step normally out of the vehicle - jump with feet together as far from the vehicle as possible.
- Children should be THROWN if they are old enough to walk - babies should be held closely as you jump away.
Get as far away as possible from the vehicle (while hopping, feet together) and call for help. Remember, the ground surrounding the vehicle may still be infused with electricity - especially on a rainy day.
If you ever come across a downed power line - whether you are in your vehicle or not - keep your distance. Treat all hydro lines as though they have electricity coursing through them. You do not want to get close enough to find out. Stay safe out there folks!