Toronto is now responding to an emergency request for assistance from Winnipeg following the aftermath of a damaging Manitoba winter storm. According to the City of Toronto, 25 Urban Forestry staff will be sent to Manitoba on Monday to aide clean up efforts as the province continues to push back against severe winter weather. Both the city of Winnipeg and Manitoba declared a state of emergency last week, which allows them to request extensive aid from other Canadian cities.

Toronto’s efforts will go towards supporting the cleanup of the Winnipeg and Saskatoon regions. The city’s staff will help mitigate the on-going weather effects of flooding that started back in September with heavy showers and continue into October with snow. These unexpected conditions have caused widespread power outages and damaged an estimated 30,000 of the area's trees.

"We are happy to provide help to our neighbours in Winnipeg as they work to recover from these unprecedented weather events. I want to thank our Urban Forestry crews for the work they are undertaking over the next few weeks to respond to this emergency and help our fellow Canadians. This is a true example of how, during challenging times, we come together to support each other,” Mayor John Tory said in a statement.

Snowfall in October is not uncommon for Manitoba. However, the extreme onset of heavy snow came a lot earlier than expected this season and has brought with increasingly harsh conditions.

The heavy snow began covering the province last Wednesday and has refused to let up over the weekend. Over a quarter-million people have been left without power since the storm first hit, as the dangerous weather brought down trees and power lines.

Toronto crews aren’t expected to return from their voyage to Manitoba until November 8, 2019. Winnipeg will cover the cost of the assistance.

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