Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Ice Storm

Comments were made in yesterday's post about the Ice Storm of January 1998, which wrecked havoc in a swath all the way from Eastern Ontario to the Maritimes on this side of the border, and from upper New York State to Maine on the American side of the border. Details on the disaster can be found here. I thought I would show images of the scale of the damage at the time. These are not mine, but where I could find locations and sources for the shots, I have added them into captions.

This being an Ottawa blog, I start with this view of Parliament Hill above the Ottawa River, likely taken from Nepean Point.; the trees you see probably were too damaged by the effects of the ice to have survived. Such is still the case today, where all these years later throughout the areas hit by the storm, you can still see the catastrophic effects if you look closely.


Montreal, Canadian Press
Montreal, Canadian Press
Global News

Jen B. mentioned a book about the storm; it's one that I have too. The Ice Storm is a coffee table edition of the works of a multitude of photojournalists from various newspapers throughout the affected areas chronicling the storm. The book is still out there, and can be found at Amazon.



40 comments:

  1. It's hard to believe it has already been 17 years. I remember it as if it was yesterday.

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  2. Be you be free from such ice for the foreseeable future!

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  3. I can hardly imagine what an ice storm could feel like. But this series of photos help the visuals. Quite frightening to say the least. Don't tangle with the might of Mother Nature.

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  4. Canada is at the north and ... the snow in winter makes havoc there.

    Tomás.

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  5. Exactly why the population of Florida is growing. :-)

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  6. Parliament Hill looks so elegant. The monochromatic effect is stunning.

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  7. sitting from my computer, wearing heated slippers, that looks beautiful.

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  8. It really is sad to see so many trees damaged by a storm like that.

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  9. @Linda: it was a monstrous storm.

    @Linda: I wouldn't like to see a repeat of it anytime soon.

    @Gemma: definitely not.

    @Tomas: it does, yes.

    @Revrunner: I expect so!

    @Janis: that does particularly happen on gray winter days.

    @Hilary: but extremely destructive!

    @Pat: it certainly can be.

    @Mo: the worst weather disaster in the country's history, as it turns out.

    @Sharon: it is, yes.

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  10. oh, my word! that bent electrical structure is amazing!

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  11. It's good to be reminded of that event. I had just recently retired and followed the ice storm very closely. It was on the news for many days. I hadn't heard about this book.

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  12. That was a terrible winter!
    I don't know if it was the same year, but I remember an ice storm in the Washinton, DC area, lots of damage, almost a week without power. The three steps leading to our door were covered by thick ice that would not melt for weeks.

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  13. Great picture for a very interesting book! Ice and storm are scary even one at a time, I can only imagine what they can do together...

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  14. @Tex: the storm brought down a lot of those hydro towers, particularly in Quebec.

    @Karl: it was nasty.

    @Judy: It was a real killer, but a silent one.

    @Red: there's also a similar book out for the ice storm of December 2013 in southern Ontario, and I've got a book along the same lines covering the firestorms in British Columbia some years ago. I'm still looking for one that was done about the Red River floods in Manitoba.

    @Merisi: ice storms like this, the damage seems to linger for weeks on end. With the 1998 storm, there were areas that went for many weeks without power.

    @VP: this was one of those perfect storms, so to speak.

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  15. I was just talking to someone today about the ice storm. We lost powerful 9 days. Wood stove and plenty of wood for it. We had cold temps so put all the food on the porch... but power for lights, showers toilets. WHAT a pain.

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  16. In north Georgia, ice storms are not that unusual. Yankees working there would laugh at us leaving work early when snow threatened because they didn't know about the icy stuff we usually get. It didn't take but one time stranded between work and home in the mess before they learned.

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  17. I remember this I think. No fun but a photographer's mine.

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  18. Yes, that was a very devastating storm! Then NB had one at Christmas in 2013 that left thousands without power for 14 days! And we had Tropical Storm Arthur in July 2014 that knocked down thousands of trees here. Now that the leaves are off one can see the trees still leaning or laying down after that one. Nature can be brutal. The book would be interesting to look at.

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  19. Oh my, these photos tell how terrible the ice storm was. The image from Global News is very scary.

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  20. I have a fiend in Merrickville who was without power for 4 weeks - with 5 little kids at the tim!

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  21. It has been a really terrible storm. The photos tell a lot.

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  22. That was a wild storm. That is the book my dad has too. So many startling images in it. Now you have me wondering about photos we took during that time. We lived north of Barrie, ON, so we didn't get hit very badly. We mostly just got beautiful photos of trees covered in ice.

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  23. Definitely a scary storm. The photos illustrates the severity of it all.

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  24. What a disaster! No wonder people remember it so vividly!

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  25. @Birdman: in this day and age, when we lose power, we're seemingly at a loss if it goes on beyond a certain point.

    @Cheryl: here we do get them, but this was on a much bigger scale than any freezing rainfall before.

    @Ciel: yes, it's strangely beautiful.

    @Pamela: that 2013 storm is the same one that hit Toronto- it bypassed Ottawa though.

    @Marleen: the destructive power of nature unleashed.

    @Tamago: yesterday I was looking at a clip at Youtube of a CTV news reporter doing a piece out in Quebec during that storm. She and her cameraman caught one of those hydro towers collapsing on camera, and it took down all the hydro wires around them with it. They were trapped for hours before they got clearance to leave the area.

    @RedPat: it affected such a big area.

    @Orvokki: I would rather not see it happen again anytime soon.

    @Jen: it pretty much started getting bad in the Belleville area and moved further east from there.

    @Bill: it was a real beast of a storm.

    @Kay: it's something that'll not fade out of memory. Back in the 50s there was a hurricane named Hazel that killed people in the Toronto area that is still remembered by many as well.

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  26. Winters are bad enough here in St. Louis. I would not want to be up there in winter!

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  27. How scary! The pictures really do show how bad it was.

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  28. The melted hydro towers were the scariest.

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  29. Nothing like hearing a limb or tree crash because of the weight of the ice. It really cut a wide swath.

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  30. @Norma: winters here can be beastly!

    @Stuart: I thought they showed the scale of the damage well.

    @Lois: it was catastrophic.

    @Jennifer: seeing them crumple like a house of cards was astonishing.

    @Mari: I've seen the damage on certain trees- some come back, but others look as if they're shattered by a bomb.

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  31. Pretty nasty storm. Ice storms are really tough on electrical equipment. It pulls the conductors out of the sockets and the workers have to put the system back together pole by pole.

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  32. That's amazing but scary at the same time.

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