January 22, 2019, 9:00pm
This afternoon I was informed by a representative for 260 Wellesley Street East that a flood in the building had resulted in a temporary Toronto Hydro service shut-off to allow for an investigation into the source of the water. The City Manager's Office flagged this immediately, given Toronto's experience with the electrical fire at 650 Parliament Street, and a preemptive emergency response mobilization was initiated to ensure staff are available to respond to any development.
I immediately reached out to Toronto Hydro, who have confirmed the power-off situation at 260 Wellesley Street East. Toronto Hydro disconnected power at 260 Wellesley as a pipe apparently burst in the disposal room and leaked in the electrical room causing damage to customer-owned equipment. The building’s electrician was already onsite to make repairs, along with the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) and Toronto Fire Services who are assisting with inspections. Toronto Hydro is standing by and ready to reconnect their power once repairs have been completed and the ESA has approved the work.
Toronto Fire will be leading the response on-site for at least the next 24 hours. While they do not anticipate power will be restored within the next 48 hours, they will not be issuing an evacuation order at this time. A number of orders are being put in place to ensure the safety of residents at 260 Wellesley Street, including fire watch and check-ins to ensure residents are in good health. Toronto Fire will be assisting with these services.
In coordination with the Office of Emergency Management, Toronto Fire will also be opening the Wellesley Community Centre tonight to serve as a warming centre for residents who need this service and TTC buses will be on-site at 260 Wellesley Street East for the same purpose.
I will be watching this situation closely and will make myself available to residents and City staff to provide whatever coordination and advocacy is necessary to ensure all tenants are taken care of immediately. My heart goes out to displaced 650 Parliament residents who may be staying at 260 Wellesley East who may be reliving trauma.
I remain in close contact with the property owner, their representative and City staff. Any updates that I receive from them or City staff in the coming hours will be shared in a timely fashion.