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article imageWind blows roof off of NS retirement home during storm

By Lynn Curwin     Dec 14, 2010 in World
Thirteen seniors were evacuated from an assisted-care home in Nova Scotia after high winds tore a section off the roof from the building.
The wind and rain storm hit much of the province Monday night and Tuesday morning, but it struck the Annapolis Valley especially hard.
The seniors were removed from Kingsway Gardens Home in Windsor after the roof of an unoccupied section of the centre collapsed.
Jim Oickle, the home’s head of maintenance, was called when a hole appeared in the roof above the pool.
"There was a good eight-by-ten [foot] piece of the roof missing when I got in,” the CBC quoted him as saying. “As we were standing there talking, we could literally see the main wall of the pool buckle as the wind blew in on it."
He left that section and then heard a bang as the walls and roof collapsed. Fearing propane in the area would cause an explosion he called 911.
“I actually had to pull a fire alarm to start evacuating to wake people up,” he told the Chronicle Herald.
“I told them, 'People, we have to evacuate, come down to the lobby as quickly as possible.”
Some residents spent the night at the community centre and others went to relatives.
The Chronicle Herald reported that Windsor Fire Capt. Scott Burgess said firefighters were behind the Windsor seniors home during the storm as debris, including 200- and 300-pound beams, flew in the air.
"The storm caused a wall and a roof to dislodge from where it should have been and [it] fell into the building on the back section — not in the section where people live, but it's affixed to that piece," Albert Bahri, emergency measures co-ordinator for Windsor, told the CBC. "Until a structural engineer can confirm that it's safe, we can't allow the residents to go back in it."
The number of residents at the home had been dwindling since it was placed in receivership earlier this year.
The storm included gusts up to 140 kilometres an hour, resulting in many power outages. Some roads were blocked by fallen trees and schools in several areas were closed on Tuesday.
Part of the roof of a funeral home was blown away in Kentville and firefighters in that town almost had a tree fall on them while they were responding to a police car that had been struck by a tree.
Some places experienced flash flooding and the town of St. Stephen, New Brunswick, declared a local state of emergency.
Several people were evacuated from homes in parts of that province. Firefighters used a boat to remove one elderly couple from their home
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