Thousands of Quebecers still in the dark after powerful winter storm

In Quebec, thousands remain without power Monday after a major winter storm swept through the southern half of the province in time for the holidays.

Hydro-Québec reports that nearly 70,000 clients are still without electricity as of 10 a.m. on Boxing Day. The Quebec City, Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord regions are among the most affected areas.

“We are moving teams from one region to another to ensure that the most affected regions have the number of teams on the ground necessary for the scope of the work to be carried out in their area,” the company wrote on Twitter.

“The situation is still evolving in real time.”

The public utility says crews are working to restore power but the majority of remaining outages affect a small number of people at a time, which is why it is taking long to fix. Private companies are lending a hand to get the lights back on, too.

“Our teams will remain on the ground until each household is reconnected,” Hydro-Québec said. “Given the considerable number of places where it is necessary to intervene, the work will clearly take longer in many cases.”

The messy cocktail of powerful winds, snow and ice left than 350,000 in the dark by late Friday afternoon. Aside from power outages, the winter storm closed schools, prompted road collisions and wreaked havoc on travel plans in the province.

After cancelling all Christmas Day trains on its Toronto-Ottawa and Toronto-Montreal routes, Via Rail tweeted Sunday evening that it was also cancelling all Boxing Day trains on the corridors due to the ongoing complications.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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