While Brandon dealt with a near-record amount of floodwaters, an evening storm on Saturday toppled trees throughoug the city, knocking out power in huge swaths of the south end — and there was a big fire across from City Hall.
City crews were too busy to do much more last night than mark the worst of the uprooted trees, some of which blocked streets. The city said that the worst of the damage was south of Richmond Avenue, between First Street and 13th Street. Several trees had fallen across Sixth Street, north of Richmond, including one that blocked nearly the entire street.
"We didn't even hear it," said one incredulous Brandon resident, late last night, as he looked over the tree, which had fallen away from his home. He had his phone out as a flashlight to assess the damage — there was no power for blocks.
The city had put out orange pylons to warn drivers.
In a back lane behind Fifth Street, a tree also downed a power line, which was draped across garbage and recycling bins. There was no sparking.
Environment Canada says that the highest wind reported at the official airport weather station was 76 km/h, but the further south one went, the more trees were knocked over, and it's possible winds were higher at the south end of the city.
Some of the worst of the damage turned out to be in the cemetery, with trees this morning that are ripped out of the ground and propped up on gravestones.
Despite online gossip, there's no confirmation that there was a tornado touchdown in Brandon.
Meanwhile, with power also out near the police station and City Hall, fire crews were battling a blaze at a Chinese food restaurant on 10th Street. Several blocks were filled with hazy smoke, and although firefighters appeared to have it under control around midnight, flames burst out later.
The city says it will have a media update at its morning flood briefing, scheduled for 10 a.m.