Following are the news archives, with more recent additions at the top.

Households refers to the number of Hydro customers (residential and business).


January 20th Headlines - 1:00 PM

  • There are currently approximately 187,000 without power.
  • The temperature is a mild -1 degrees celcius. Forecasts for tomorrow are for a sunnier day, but with cooler temperatures.
  • Last night's primary topic at the City of Montreal's Council meeting was the fallout from the icestorm. The Council has decided to set up a special task force to evaluate what happened and how similar problems would be handled in the future. Two of the major concerns were the water supply and snow removal problems.
  • Hydro Quebec still has 3,000 people working on restoring power and there are an additional 2,000 support personnel. These people are still working 16 hour days.

January 20th Headlines - 10:00 AM

  • The downtown core of Montreal finally reopens to normal activity levels, unlike downtown Hulll and the Outaouais area which still have a shortened workday. 
  • The number of households in Quebec without power reached under 205,000 late last night. Less than 500 on the island of Montreal are without power on the Island of Montreal.
  • There will be a major news conference held today by Hydro Quebec to announce revised dates for the remaining regions without power.
  • The Montreal Gazette reported today that a group of at least 57 students and 3 teachers from the South Shore will be part of "Project Freeze Lift". These people will be flown tomorrow morning, courtesy of Canadian Airlines and the BC Department of Forests, to Grand Forks Secondary School in Grand Forks, BC. Students will attend school there and stay with local residents for the next two weeks. Please inform family members and friends about this project.   Students can be put on the waiting list or receive further information by calling Gordon Rosenoff, principal of St. John's School,  at 514-672-4010, Local 4702.


January 19th Headlines

  • The number of households in Quebec without power has now dropped to 225,000.
  • Temperatures are slightly more mild today with a moderate snowfall covering the ground.

January 18th Headlines - 6:00 PM

  • Minor gains were made in restoring power: the number has now dropped to 242,000 Hydro Quebec customers without power.
  • School Update: All PSGM schools (except one school in TMA) and Montreal universities will be open Monday. The Montreal Catholic School Board has now announced they will be open tomorow. The Lakeshore schools will be open Monday, with the exception of Vaudreuil, St. Lazare,  Dorion, Pincourt and Hudson. In these cases, an announcement will be made tomorrow morning at 6 am  Many of the South Shore School boards will be closed. It is recommended that you contact your school board for specific information.

January 18th Headlines - 5:30 PM

  • Downtown Montreal businesses are asked to only open from 9 am to 4 pm.
  • The number of people with influenza in St-Hyacinthe has now reportedly tripled.
  • At least 24 people have been killed so far due to the ice storm in the province of Quebec.
  • Problems with fires and other accidents continue to be a problem, as are personal injuries.
  • Temperatures reached a high of -4 degrees celcius in Montreal, there is a possibility of snowfall this evening.

January 18th Headlines - 2:00 PM

  • Industry Minister John Manley is encouraging consumers to report price gouging to the Industry Department by calling 800-348-5358. Although price gouging is not illegal, Manley assures that the public will be made aware of offenders.
  • Several municipalities should be completely restored on the South Shore. Currently, Chateauguay, St. Bruno, Laprairie and Boucherville are being restored. Granby area is also seeing some power being restored.
  • There are 257,000 Hydro Quebec customers without power.
  • All PSGM schools (except one school in TMA) and Montreal universities will be open Monday. The Montreal Catholic School Board has postponed the reopening of schools indefinitely due to dangerous conditions around  their 250 schools. The Lakeshore schools will be open Monday, with the exception of Vaudreuil, St. Lazare,  Dorion, Pincourt and Hudson. In these cases, an announcement will be made tomorrow morning at 6 am  Many of the South Shore School boards will be closed.
  • The Federal Government has announced that they will be flexible with businesses that are unable to meet their tax obligations due to the storm. There will be a waiver of penalty and interest for those affected.
  • According to today's Montreal Gazette, on Friday afternoon, there were 17,800 people remaining in 204 emergency shelters in southern Quebec. The number has fallen since then.

January 17th Headlines - 3:00 PM

  • The latest update on numbers: 260,000 households are still without power.
  • The Montreal Gazette gave an estimate of total costs attributed to the ice storms and blackouts of $1.5 billion.
  • Ontario Hydro expects to have 98% of customers back online within the next week. (Last count: 40,000 without power, or 120,000 people)
  • The Quebec Labor Code has no special provisions for disasters. This means that employers are not obliged to pay their employees for work missed. Each company has been making it's own policies. Generally, what we're hearing is that most medium to large sized companies are paying their regular full-time employees, but not their part-time or on-call workers. In many cases, companies are unable to pay because of their own financial situation resulting from the closures.

January 17th Headlines - 12:00 PM

  • Hydro maintained the number of customers under the 300,000 mark. Current numbers are 288,300 without power.
  • Hydro maintains its expectation to restore power to those outside of the dark triangle today.
  • Cities within the triangle are expected to get power restored by January 26th  - 9 days away.
  • A new problem is dealing with the ice build up. There has been at least one apartment building which has been evacuated due to unsafe conditions.
  • The total federal government contribution to job creation for cleanup of areas affected is $45 million, with $25 million going to municipalities in Quebec.

January 17th Headlines - 12:00 AM

  • Hydro has now announced they expect to have power completely restored throughout the province within 10 days.
  • Total count to date: 37,000 hydro poles and 470 transmission towers have been replaced.   Transmission towers cost approximately 1/2 million dollars each. These two expenses plus the cost ov overtime work for hydro employees who have been working 16 hour shifts makes one wonder what the total bill will be. These are expenses Hydro Quebec will have to foot. But in the long run, it will be the customers who have to pay for it.
  • To add to the problems, 48 people in Saint-Hyacinthe were hospitalized with the flu. A massive vaccination program has been implemented in the area to prevent further spreading of it.
  • Good news for downtown residents: Hydro has given the okay for making regular use of power over the weekend. The reason being that with office buildings closed, there will be a lighter load on the system. Other areas are still asked to use power scarcely.
  • Hydro Quebec has said it will not be cutting back on employees' 16 hour days unless specific workers request it. Employees have said they want to get power restored as soon as possible.
  • Tomorrow, temperatures are expected to be good in the morning, but gradually dropping over the afternoon to an expected -18 to -20 degrees celcius with the windchill factor.
  • Each school board will have the discretion about making up for missed school days.
  • Day care is being offered in areas where school will not start next week to allow parents to return to work.
  • Chretien has joined Team Canada. Premiere Bouchard has said he will not because he is needed at home.

January 16th Headlines - 7:00 PM

  • As of 4:30 pm, Hydro Quebec had succeeding in restoring power to 80% of those who had lost it. Currently, 267,900 Quebec residents are still out of power.
  • Much of the focus is starting to turn to our hard-hit farming community. For example, our maple tree industry has been seriously hit.  Given that it takes 25 years for a tree to be able to be tapped, damages wil not be easy to repair.
  • Temperatures today in downtown Montreal had a high of - 9 degrees celcius. Severe wind conditions meant a temperature of -23 degrees celcius taking into account the windchill factors. Temperature is expected to be -15 this evening, with severe winds continuing.
  • Tractors and jackhammers were brought on the scene to help clear up the icy region as regular snow removal equipment is insufficient.
  • The federal government is offering $25 million to the municipalities for job creation.   This will be for short-term jobs created to held reconstruct the affected regions.

January 16th Headlines - 1:00 PM

  • 286, 400 customers are still without power.
  • Hydro reached its objective yesterday and restored power to 50,000 homes and has restored power to another 11,000 today.
  • Power will have their power temporarily in some areas to help restore power to all areas outside of the South Shore by tomorrow. Do not be alarmed if your power is suddenly cut! It is only temporary.
  • Montreal school board has postponed return to school indefinitely due to road conditions and dangers.
  • Warnings are still being issued to avoid the downtown area due to dangers of falling ice.
  • Firewood will still be in a great demand on the South Shore for at least another week.

January 15th Headlines - 10:00 PM

  • Workers from Connecticut Power have been called home.
  • Musical group, Oasis, whose Montreal performance was cancelled earlier this week due to the weather conditions has provided a generous donation to the Red Cross towards the Disaster Fund.
  • The Association of Consumers in Quebec has been investigating claims of price gouging. Consumers were right, they said. However, with the recent publicity around this, the number of reported incidents has dropped. Primarily reports were for jacked up prices on gas, firewood, and other emergency supplies.
  • Consumers requiring the services of electricians, plumbers and other professionals are being told to verify that prices are not being increased. They are also advised to find out if there is a minimum charge.
  • 343,900 customers are still in the dark. Only 7,400 are on the island of Montreal - of them approximately 4,000 are in the Pointe-Claire area.

January 15th Headlines - 6:30 PM

  • 344,600 households remain in the dark in the Quebec area - approximately 1,000,000 people.
  • Hydro Quebec continues to make significant gains. There was a setback today when 4,000 Pointe Claire residents lost their power. However, 98% of households on the island of Montreal now have power. Being reconnected doesn't mean we have all the power we need. People still need to be careful. Power was now restored on a second line from Beauharnois.
  • Hydro has said that all Quebec customers, with the exception of those in the Dark Triangle on the South Shore, will have power restored by Saturday.
  • Some residents in Bedford were able to regain their power through an arrangement with Vermont. Other arrangements are being made to serve residents on at least a temporary basis. Hydro Quebec has no projections of how much power may be borrowed from Vermont.
  • Sun Youth has issued a warning that people are going door-to-door collecting funds supposedly on their behalf. Sun Youth does not solicit funds in this manner.
  • Schools in remaining regions will only be reopened on Monday, including universities. Teachers for the most part are asked to report to work tomorrow.
  • Many downtown businesses that opened today did not remain open for long. Problem: many sidewalks are so covered with ice and snow or are hazardous areas, it resulted in problems with access.
  • Additional snow today caused delays in the City of Montreal's attempts to clean-up. Further snow fall expected this evening may hamper continued efforts.
  • Hospitals are reporting an increase in injuries  due to accidents caused by icy conditions.
  • Schools are investigating options to make up for missed classes.

January 15th Headlines - 6:30 AM

  • The downtown Montreal core is being reopened today - one day earlier than expected. Businesses are asked to respect opening hours of 9 am to 4 pm.
  • Compensation for those without power since January 12th is now being extended to include those in areas not previously on the list. It will also be offered now on a daily rate of $10,  rather than being weekly based.The list had originally contained primarily South Shore regions at $70 per week. Payments will be made by municipalities and be reiumbursed by the provincial governments.
  • Premiere Bouchard announced late yesterday that Hydro will construct a massive tower to redistribute energy in such a way that the island of Montreal will not be affected.
  • Two of the major hydro tranmission lines were repaired yesterday. However, load shedding continues.
  • Victoria Bridge remains closed this morning.
  • A special appeal was issued by Association France-Quebec to help provide assistance. Funds will be collected and turned over to the Red Cross in Quebec.
  • Lakeshore school board remains closed through Friday. Registration will take place on January 14th, 15th and 19th.
  • Weather will be -12 degrees celcius today.


January 14th Headlines - 6:00 PM - By Nicole Lascelle

  • Premier Bouchard has expressed grave concern for residents who remain in their homes without electricity. Bouchard says that many of those who continue to remain in freezing homes are the elderly. Bouchard also says that many seniors feel more secure in their own homes and that workers going door to door to check on residents must be extremely respectful to these citizens. The door to door campaign continues at this time.
  • Prime Minister Chretien has stated that he may join Team Canada this coming weekend. Chretien says that his first priority must remain with "team Canada" here at, but confirms that his presence is important at the meetings scheduled in Brazil. The Canadian delegation wrapped up its efforts in Mexico earlier.
  • Thirty-eight residents were considered "problematic" in Greenfield Park earlier today when rescue workers knocked on doors to see who should be removed from their homes. Four of the thirty-eight were rushed to hospital with severe hypothermia while another fourteen had to be strongly "convinced" to abandon their residences.
  • Those without power were again reminded to take precautions against carbon monoxide poisoning, food poisoning and hypothermia. As well, people have be urged not to gerry-rig heating devices, but to move to one of the many shelters still available.
  • Hydro Quebec reports that over 1000 pylons were damaged during last week's storms.
  • Here are the numbers of households without power at 2:30 p.m. today according to Hydro Quebec.

    Laurentides & Outaouais: 25 300
    Island of Montréal: 10 500
    Montérégie & Shouth Shore: 301 400
    Beauce-Thetford: 1 900
    Total: 339 100
  • People are still being advised to stay out of the central Montreal area for business and school because of the lack of necessary power available for normal activity and due to challenges in de-icing.
  • The Federal Government announced that immediate compensation to the affected provinces will be paid. Quebec will be receiving an estimated $50 million and Ontario $25 million.
  • Fifteen fatal deaths have been recorded in the province of Quebec, 9 due to carbon monoxide poisoning. Many other people are in critical condition.

January 14th Headlines - 12:30 PM

  • 431,000 are still without power.
  • Hydro Quebec is pleased that the fragile temporary installations have been holding up well.
  • People are asked to avoid the downtown area until Friday.
  • Several major streets are closed downtown while the city cleans up.
  • The Sherbrooke area is almost back to normal.
  • People are now being informed that the $70 checks promised to those without power for a week or more will not be offered to those who suffered power outages only last week. They are only being offered for compensation for those whose power outages extends this week onwards.
  • More downtown businesses appear to be closed than yesterday.
  • Canada Post announced that there was not any mail service to the downtown core yesterday, however, all government checks were delivered. They are currently four to five days behind schedule and operated at 40% capacity yesterday.

January 14th Headlines - 1:30 AM - By Nicole Lascelle

  • Fiona Downey at CBC Radio interviewed Sharon Tucci about this site at 11:00 pm 01/13/98. Word is starting to get around!
  • 534,500 customers are now without power in the Quebec region.
  • Most of the Eastern Township region has now regained power.
  • People are still asked to avoid the downtown area tomorrow.
  • CECM teachers are asked to report on Thursday and school will resume on Friday.
  • All Montreal area universities will be closed until Monday.
  • CBC Radio reports that temperatures are dropping rapidly
    currently it is -10 celsius in Montreal, with the low expected
    to reach -20 in some regions.
  • Premier Bouchard and Prime Minister Chretien are still strongly urging those who are still left without power to seek shelter.
  • Both the premier and prime minister are extending their request that downtown Montreal businesses remain closed through Thursday at midnight to allow Hydro Quebec more time to recover.
  • Clean-up efforts are being hampered in the city of Montreal due to the massive amount of ice buildup. The city is experiencing some equipment breakdowns as a result of the difficult conditions.
  • The city of Sherbrooke, which experienced power failures on Tuesday still remains in the dark. Extreme caution is urged while travelling through these areas as visibility is considered poor.
  • The 1-800-636-2433 number is now no longer accepting offers of shelter, the line has been overwhelmed by generous citizens however they have reached a point where available space now significantly outnumbers the demand. As far as we understand, offers of food and supplies are still being accepted.
  • The island of Montreal is entering a slow recovery phase, however the south shore remains in great difficulty.
  • The shelter at Blue Bonnets race track now reports less that 100 people are in its facility tonight.

To view previous headlines relating to the Ice Storm, click here.

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