Barrie, Ont. construction worker survives being tossed in trailer when EF-2 hit
Stephen Galyen was at a construction site in Barrie, Ont. on Thursday when the trailer he was in started to shake before being hurled into the air.
The powerful storm, later determined to be an EF-2 tornado, had picked up the trailer and tossed it two streets over.
"We were basically just flying around through the air. It was like barrel-rolling over and over," Galyen recalls.
As the winds tore the trailer apart, Galyen says he and two others were ejected, landing in a muddy area of the job site.
The construction worker admits there was a moment he didn't think he would survive.
"I remember being on a desk at one point, things are spilling, you're hitting the ceiling, off the floor, off the wall," he describes.
Galyen remained conscious, but his two colleagues suffered serious injuries and were initially unresponsive and bleeding.
He says he jumped into action, dragging his coworkers through the mangled construction site to the still-standing office.
Galyen brought one of the men, Chris Russo, to a bin where he could rest his injured leg and broken ribs.
"I got Eddie on my shoulder," Galyen says he carried another worker, Eddie Ameland, to the front door of the office before using his belt to tie off his arm "to stop the bleeding."
The three men were soon rushed to the hospital to be treated for their injuries. Both Ameland and Russo have since been released.
Thursday's twister left a trail of destruction in the Prince William Way area five kilometres long and up to 100 metres wide in the city north of Toronto.
No one was killed in last week's tornado, but 11 people were injured, 10 of those were hospitalized.
The city said more than 100 residents were displaced, and 71 homes were deemed uninhabitable.
Galyen has since returned to work and continues sorting through the debris looking for his belongings.