Days after the Old Marina Restaurant was destroyed by fire, investigators are still unable to get inside the ruins of the building on the shores of Puslinch Lake to figure out how it happened. On Tuesday, investigators told CTV News the building is a total loss and the damage is close to two million dollars for just the building itself.
Flames could be seen shooting from windows and filling the sky with smoke early afternoon on July 31. The fire reduced the building to rubble. It’s considered a total loss.
Officials say it’s still too dangerous to go inside the ruins of the burnout restaurant and, due to the severe damage, the investigation into the cause of the fire has yet to start.
No one was injured in the fire. Commenters online credit restaurant staff for safely getting everyone out.
Heavy equipment will be needed to take apart the building to allow the investigation to continue. The Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) has been contacted, but they say it was decided to leave the investigation in the hands of officials in Puslinch.
A Kitchener father, who has been living in Canada for 31 years, is fighting to stay. Jamie Carrasco is facing deportation to Nicaragua after being accused of crimes against humanity while serving under the Sandinista National Liberation Front Government from 1983 to 1989.
“It’s been a nightmare being in this situation. Every year in limbo, you don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow,” Carrasco said.
He moved to Canada in 1991 after fleeing the Sandinista government. He said he was open and honest with immigration about his involvement with the regime, but said he never took part in any of the cruelties carried out by the group.
“I never killed nobody. I can say my conscience is free of that. I never tortured nobody. But [the Canadian government] presents me like I’m a criminal, but I’m not that kind of person.”
Canada Border Services Agency started its deportation process against Carrasco in 1992. He’s been appealing the process ever since.
Cleanup is underway after a fast-moving summer storm swept across southwestern Ontario Wednesday evening. Tornado warnings were in place for several areas, including southern Wellington County around 6 p.m.
Elora, Salem, Fergus and Elmira appear to have borne the brunt of the storm, with Environment Canada reporting extensive tree damage, downed power lines and utility outages in those communities. The national weather agency’s latest damage survey suggests an EFO downburst brought winds near 130 km/h to the Elora area. No injuries have been reported from the storm.
“I looked to the sky and I saw that the clouds were swirling,” Elora resident Rick Almeida said.
It’s not clear yet if a tornado touched down in Wellington County, but a crew from the Northern Tornados Project was out Thursday surveying the damage.
In Elora, large trees, some nearly 100 years old, were either damaged or ripped right out of the ground around a four-block radius near Water and McNab streets.
The Waterloo Region District School Board and Chair Scott Piatowski believe a former teacher is trying to use a $1.75 million defamation lawsuit to silence them.
In a statement of defence, the board and the chair claim the suit filed by Carolyn Burjoski was brought forward to “silence the defendants and chill the expression of others” supporting the LGBTQ2S+ community.
The lawsuit was filed after Piatowski stopped Burjoski mid-delegation during the Jan. 17 school board meeting. At the time, she was speaking about the content of some books found in elementary school libraries, and criticizing the age-appropriateness of some of the books regarding sexuality and transgender issues.
The average sale price for all residential property types in Waterloo region continues to fall. The newly formed Waterloo Region Association of Realtors (WRAR) says the average price across all property types in July was $752,301.
This represents a 4.9 per cent decrease compared to June 2022, and a 1.2 per cent decrease from prices seen in July 2021.
“In the wake of July’s interest rate hike, home sales in Waterloo region continued to slow,” says Megan Bell, president of WRAR, in a media release. “We’re seeing a clear shift in the market and what people can afford to purchase or are willing to pay. On the bright side for buyers, it’s not the extreme sellers’ market it was.”