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Ice bombs cancel Jays game

UPDATE: 7:10 p.m.

Chunks of ice crashing down from the CN Tower following a weekend of freezing rain forced the closure of the Toronto landmark and damaged the roof of a nearby baseball stadium, prompting the Toronto Blue Jays to cancel Monday night's game against the Kansas City Royals.

Police had blocked off the area directly under the CN Tower and the Rogers Centre due to the "relatively large" blocks of ice tumbling down onto the streets and sidewalks below.

"Fortunately there's been no injuries reported," said Const. Allyson Douglas-Cook.

The Blue Jays said crews were working to repair a hole in the roof of the Rogers Centre and fans would be treated to a "traditional doubleheader" Tuesday afternoon.

"We apologize to our fans for this inconvenience," the team said on Twitter.


UPDATE: 7 p.m.

Toronto Blue Jays executive Andrew Miller was standing with some colleagues by the Rogers Centre infield Monday morning when he heard a series of unexpected bangs.

Several pieces of ice fell on the domed stadium from the nearby CN Tower, with one chunk creating a hole the size of a workdesk in the roof on the east side of the building.

"It's hard to describe, it was really loud," Miller said. "It sounded like fireworks or some sort of explosion."

The evening game between the Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals was postponed about 90 minutes before the scheduled first pitch at 7:07 p.m. ET. The teams will play a double-header Tuesday.

Miller, who was at field level to inspect damage from a weekend ice storm that hammered the southern Ontario region, said he was startled by a series of "different, loud collisions."

"We saw it happen, it was pretty frightening at the time," said Miller, the team's executive vice-president of business operations. "We knew that (if) there was a game going on at the time, it would have been a risk to players and the fans."

A hole was still visible in the roof on Monday afternoon. Work crews eventually repaired the tear although tarps and buckets remained on the turf in right field, along the left-field line and the edge of the infield to catch drips.

Miller said pieces of ice crashed to the turf in right field along with some insulation from the roof.

Team officials consulted with engineering staff, CN Tower representatives and the Toronto Police before making the decision to reschedule the game.

If the double-header against the Royals is played, the second game will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game, which is set to begin at 3:07 p.m. ET. Toronto was coming off back-to-back postponements in Cleveland over the weekend due to rain.

Even though Monday's game was rescheduled, the Blue Jays are calling it a cancellation as they'll lose a home gate.

Fans with tickets to Tuesday's game will be able to attend both games of the double-header, the team said. Tickets from Monday's game can also be exchanged for one of nine future games (including entry on Tuesday).


ORIGINAL: 12:50 p.m.

Chunks of ice crashing down from the CN Tower following a weekend of freezing rain forced the closure of the Toronto landmark and prompted the city's baseball team to consider cancelling Monday night's game against the Kansas City Royals at the nearby Rogers Centre.

Police said they had blocked off the area directly under the CN Tower and the baseball stadium due to the "relatively large" blocks of ice tumbling down onto the streets and sidewalks below.

"Fortunately there's been no injuries reported," said Const. Allyson Douglas-Cook.

Falling chunks of ice have reportedly smashed windows on neighbouring buildings, damaged the roof of Rogers Centre and smashed vehicles parked in the area.

The Toronto Blue Jays said they were working with the CN Tower and local police to evaluate conditions around the stadium and expected to provide an update later in the day.

Toronto, along with much of southern and central Ontario, is recovering from an ice storm that resulted in power outages, cancelled flights and road collisions over the weekend.

By Monday afternoon, more than 120,000 customers across much of the province remained without power as the weather system transitioned to drenching rain in most areas.



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