NEWS
12/27/2013 07:19 EST | Updated 02/26/2014 05:59 EST

Toronto ice storm: Thousands begin day 6 without power

With thousands of Toronto residents now in their sixth day without heat and electricity in freezing temperatures, some say they're reaching the breaking point. Despite this, many will likely not have power restored for at least a few more days.

CBC's Travis Dhanraj spoke to people Thursday who've been without heat and power since Sunday's devastating ice storm hit.

The storm knocked out power to more than 250,000 customers. As of Friday morning, Toronto Hydro reported that 32,400 customers are still without power while crews work around the clock to repair damaged lines.

Among the thousands still without power is George Sabourin and his wife Carole Anne Marie. They have no heat or power in their Victoria Park apartment. Worse, the water was shut off to prevent pipes from freezing.

"All my food is spoiled. I have to throw everything out in the fridge," Carole Anne Marie said. The city has set up warming centres across the city, but the Sabourins say they won't go because they're worried about their pets.

And while residents become increasingly frustrated, Toronto Hydro says they're working around the clock to restore power.

Full restoration likely days away

Spokesperson Tanya Bruckmueller said that while large blocks of power have been restored, crews are now into the slower work of reconnecting individual buildings. She said it may still be a few days before all customers have power.

Scarborough remains the hardest hit area of the city, with pockets of outages remaining in North York, Don Mills and the West end. In some cases, Toronto Hydro workers have been slowed by fallen trees and branches that litter many streets.

Bruckmueller also asked residents not "engage" work crews with questions.

"We want to make sure our crews can concentrate on the work that they're doing," she said Friday in an interview on CBC News Network. "They don't have any more information than what's out there. The faster they get the work done, the faster everybody gets power back."

Bruckmueller also said some residents may see their power restored, then shut off again. In many cases this is a good sign, and a possible indication that crews are working in their area.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is expected to provide an update on the storm situation at 11 a.m. Friday.