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Canada Cost of floods in Toronto likely to exceed the $600-million price tag of 2005 storm

A large truck blasts its way through flood water on Islington Avenue, just north of Bloor Street in Etobicoke, July 9, 2013.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

It may be weeks before the full extent of damage from Monday night's flooding in Toronto is known, but the cost will likely exceed the $600-million hit from the city's last major storm in 2005, an insurance expert said Tuesday.

Peter Karageorgos of the Insurance Bureau of Canada said that member companies are still in the early stages of assessing damage to homes and cars, and that a full dollar figure will likely not be available for at least a couple of weeks.

"Everyone's obviously still in a clean-up state trying to get water from their basements, dry things out," Mr. Karageorgos said.

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Still, he said, judging from the scope of damage and area affected by Monday night's rain, he's "suspecting more claims and a higher dollar amount than that 2005 storm."

In the August, 2005, storm, which washed out Finch Avenue and flooded hundreds of basements, he said damage was limited to specific pockets of the city – much of it in parts of North York around Finch Avenue West at Black Creek Drive.

Monday's storm, on the other hand, he said, appeared to been much more widespread.

Record rainfalls on Monday brought massive power outages, shut down major highways, and flooded homes across the GTA. As of Tuesday morning, tens of thousands of residents in the city remained without power and a number of roads and transit routes were still closed.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada represents private home, car and business insurers in the country.

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