Massive ice floes rose out of a lake in Canada over the weekend, destroying a dozen homes and damaging fifteen others.
Within mere moments, strong winds drove piles of ice onto the shore from Dauphin Lake on Friday, inundating homes and giving residents only minutes to flee.
55-mile-per hour winds drove masses of ice from the thawing lake in a phenomenon that is commonly witnessed but rarely seen with such intensity and size.
By Friday night, a state of emergency had been declared in the town of Ochre River, a 188 miles northwest of Winnipeg.
Authorities told the Winnipeg Free Press that seven of the destroyed homes were ‘literally crushed by the ice that rose up within minutes from Lake Dauphin.’
Twenty-seven homes were affected in total as the frozen wall to plowed through everything in its way along Ochre Beach.
Though the moving ice was as tall as a house in places, no injuries have been reported.
Nonetheless, residents were still shaken Saturday
Even some of those whose houses remained standing were allowed inside only to collect their belongings after authorities declared many of the seemingly spared dwellings to be structurally unfit to inhabit.
One family told the Free Press the ice easily topped and pushed into their two-story home, shuffled moved furniture around, and ‘pushed the bathroom tub and vanity into the hallway.’
‘They heard it before they saw it coming up their decks,’ Ochre River deputy Reeve Clayton Watts told the Free Press Saturday. ‘Then, it came right in their front windows. It was just a matter of minutes. Fortunately, no one was hurt. We were very lucky.’
The town, still reeling from a severe 2011 flood that destroyed many homes, was somber but not helpless.
Watts was one hand for Saturday’s clean-up efforts, which saw friends and neighbors come together to get the community back on its feet.
Hundreds of volunteers were on hand with shovels, wheel barrows, and even bulldozers to dig the town out.
‘Everybody was pitching in to help them make it through the day,’ Watts said. ‘It was a good community effort. It’s typical. Everybody just helps out.’
A similar phenomenon occurred around 600 miles away at a Minnesota lake resort.
And though the ice wave on the American side wasn't nearly was as destructive, it still had some residents calling it an 'ice Tsunami' and marveling at its unbelievable speed, according to WCCO.
Youtube user Darla Johnson uploaded footage of ice rising out of Milles Lacs Lake and into the townhomes of Izatys Resort on May 11.
The same high wind weather system is thought to have caused both incidents.