Canada's major east-west link is open once again in northwestern Ontario following an hours-long closure that left semis lined up in both directions down the highway.

A washout caused "a substantial hole in the highway" and there was no way around it as highway crews scrambled to make repairs. As of 1:45 p.m. traffic was flowing in both directions again.


Ontario's Ministry of Transportation (MTO) reports Highway 17 is closed near distance marker 108 and Richard Lake, about 40 km east of Kenora. The MTO says no detour is in place.

Both lanes are closed, and the MTO is asking people to use caution in the area.

The closure was announced at 4:37 a.m. So far there's no word on how long the closure may last.

Northwestern Ontario has been plagued by washouts and flooding on major roads this spring and summer as they've dealt with heavy rainfall. On Sunday a powerful storm moved through the region that caused extensive damage, including at a campground that had to be evacuated. Over 500 customers are still without power as crews clean up from the aftermath.