By Luke Kenton
This apocalyptic ‘arctic’ slide resembles a scene from a doomsday sci-fi flick, as thousands of tonnes of ice hurtle through the river in a Canadian town.
Thanks to the cyclone bomb weather phenomenon, the east coast of Northern America has seen some volatile weather conditions throughout the entirety of January – and Canada has certainly been no exception.
Having lived through infamously harsh winters, Johnathan Anstey, of Newfoundland, Canada, wasn’t surprised to see several feet of snowfall at the turn of the year – but he wasn’t expecting an ‘arctic landslide’ to occur just a few feet from his back garden.
Following intense snowfall on January 11th, the higher ground of Deer Lake was met with 18cm (around 7 inches) of rainfall over a 24-hour period just three days later.
This influx of precipitation caused the Humber River to burst its banks, flushing several tonnes of ice downstream, an event that lasted nearly eight hours.
Admitting that he’s never seen anything like this in the 36 years he’s lived in the town, Johnathan said: “People from the town who’ve been living here some 80 years have never witnessed so much ice and water flowing.
“We do get high water in the river during spring melt, but nothing of this magnitude – it was a beast of its own.
“It was quite something to watch unfold, but at the same time, it made me feel very uneasy.
“The force of nature was out of our hands.
“The west coast of Newfoundland has lost highways, houses have flooded, and our backcountry roads were almost all destroyed with washouts and bridge failures.
“The town and entire area is still recovering from moments like this in the bomb cyclone, some areas may never be fixed.
“My home backs out onto the river, but the road downstream from me has now been closed after it was evacuated.
“The land continues to collapse into the river as the water is now subsiding.
“Standing watching it all from just a few feet away makes you feel very small indeed.”