Roofers were run ragged in Windsor and Essex County Thursday cleaning up from a wicked wind storm and shingles were flying off shelves instead of the tops of battered homes.
"I haven't seen this kind of customer chaos in all my time here," said Bill Matalik, who has worked at Taymar Building Products for more than two decades. "It's been like that all day. It's been non-stop."
Wind gusts of 97 km/h were recorded during the day-long windstorm that toppled trees, prompted road closures and left thousands without power. The city's 311 service centre received 345 wind-related calls.
Matalik delivered skids of shingles in the midst of the storm and said it was tricky business.
"I had trouble controlling the crane it was shaking so bad," he said. "A whole skid of shingles just swinging in the wind. It was a little bit crazy out there."
Gary Nye, project co-ordinator for Empire Roofing, said his team fielded more than 120 phone calls from frazzled homeowners over a six-hour span Wednesday. He was atop a damaged roof during the storm and likened the wind gusts to those experienced during the tornado in the summer.
"I couldn't stand up," said Nye. "I've never seen anything like it myself and I've been 33 years now doing this."
Jeff Denomme was inside for the bulk of the storm, but saw it play out on his social media feeds. He arrived home to find shingles ripped from his roof and his Internet down.
"I saw that this was happening all day," he said. "I just didn't think it was going to happen to me."