Thursday, March 25, 2010

High Winds Blast Magdalen Islands Again

Island Chalet Washed Away

La Martinique - Residents of the Magdalen Islands have been concerned about erosion for several years now but after high winds swept a chalet away from it's foundation damaged several other homes yesterday, the concern will become much greater.

Fortunately no one was injured when gale-force winds blustered across the islands and blew down a few summer homes near the shore. The chalet in question was knocked off its posts early in the morning during a fierce windstorm.

Two walls were torn off and furniture was flung down the beach, including a sofa bed, kitchen chairs and a propane tank.  Power lines kept the house on a loose tether that didn't stop the waves from beating down on it, Deraspe said.

"All day, we were battered by waves," he said. Mr. Deraspe tied what was left of the cottage to large boulders on the beach. He estimates the damage will cost him up to $40,000.

Islanders are worried about the weather and believe storms are more frequent now than in previous years, Deraspe said. Several other homes on the shore were damaged by high water levels that caused flooding.

Waves are eating away the shoreline and a mild winter meant there wasn't enough ice cover in the Gulf of St. Lawrence to absorb the impact. SandCove beach, which is normally high above the sea and at least 20 wide, is non-existent and the waves are chewing away at the sandy capes, as the photo shows. 

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