2012 Disaster

It was a Wild Ride! Here’s the

YouTube Video of the Breaking News 

10 Motel Rooms, both Chalets and the Barn, were underwater. The highway acted like a DAM. The water eventually busted through the highway, and turned into a raging river. I had to call 911 and tell them they had to close the highway.

Motel Underwater
Our 10 Room Motel Building was submerged 😳
This photo made it into “CTV’s Top Photos of 2012”
Wawa Northern Lights Disaster Cartoon
We were Closed for the Season. No one went floating down the river. 😆

Photo Gallery

Disaster Northern Lights Motel Wawa
It wasn’t a Sinkhole

The torrential rains overwhelmed the culvert (And all culverts surrounding Wawa – Wawa was an Island), and set us in a lake. The 10 room building at the bottom of the photo below, had water ½ way up the windows before the Highway crumbled.

Wawa Flood Images
It took 1 Week to rebuild and reopen the Highway
Northern Lights Disaster Wawa
There was no Detour, it caused all sorts of panic
We were closed for a year, and didn’t have Business Interruption Insurance
Northern Lights Motel Wawa Disaster
But we ALWAYS kept our sense of Humour. Our Christmas Card for 2012 ~
We lost 12 of our 16 Rooms. (12 Rooms is the average size of a Motel)
Wawa Disaster Northern Lights Motel
No one thought we would SURVIVE. The MTO didn’t even give us our entrance back 😰
wawa flood promise
Elected Officials declared Wawa a Disaster and said they would help.
Wawa Disaster Relief Northern Lights Motel Photo
March 22, 2013, Our Land Loss of $180,000 was approved for Disaster Relief.
Fund raising began in March and lasted 6 Months. The Ontario Government said they would match all donations 3 to 1.

We thank Everyone for donations, and we gave all the money to Disaster Relief, understanding that they would match 3 to 1.

But Disaster relief didn’t raise enough money to fix the land enabling a rebuild. So they made us an offer that we had to refuse. $60,000 for 1/3rd of the FILL, but only if WE paid the $120,000 for the rest of the FILL – and then REBUILT? (Leave it to the Government to call THAT “Relief”) 😅 (No wonder why Government Businesses always seem to fail. lol)

Our business was destroyed, and CLOSED for a season without income. We did EVERYTHING we could to SAVE our Business and had no intentions of Bankrupting it. (We were very fortunate to have survived the whole ordeal.)

Moving on…

January 2013 – Gravel was dumped around the two rooms that were hanging into the canyon for the removal of 2 of the 12 rooms.


June 2013 – Then a road was built through the canyon for the demolition of the other 10 Room Building.


The main floors and decks of both chalets were rebuilt

After the Demolition, the property sat destroyed, without an entrance, for YEARS. We completely understood that Disaster Relief couldn’t fix the property enough to rebuild, but thought that since we rebuilt everything we could, and saved our Business, Disaster Relief “might” want to help fix the property? Perhaps just to make it safer? More appealing to look at from the highway? Slope it so that the cliffs are gone? But they said “NO”.

Northern Lights Disaster Wawa
No Help For You!
August 2016 – 4 Years after the flood…. Still destroyed…
Wawa Northern Lights Motel Disaster
Nothing says “Hospitality” like a Rusty Culvert!


Wawa Northern Lights Disaster
We looked at the mess Season… after Season….. (Always trying to stay Positive)

2017 – AECON was replacing culverts on the highway and needed a place to put fill. Just when you think that the property will be destroyed forever…. It starts getting filled!

Northern Lights Disaster
Thank you Aecon!

Northern Lights Motel Wawa

Wawa Disaster Northern Lights Motel
July 2017 – 5 Years after the Flood, we got our entrance and Pull Through Parking Lot back! Whew!

So the property is still terribly scarred from the Disaster, and since we gave Disaster Relief so much money, We thought they “might” want to help us fix the property.

But Disaster Relief said “NO”.

Northern Lights Motel Disaster

Thanks for nothing Disaster Relief! 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: