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Seaforth, Ont. tractor removed from downtown building

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A cheer from an assembled throng of onlookers greeted the removal of a tractor embedded in a building in downtown Seaforth since mid-October.

“It’s kind of exciting for the town of Seaforth. Never had so much excitement. That’s probably enough for one year, though, or a whole bunch of years,” said a resident who was one of 200 people gathered to watch the tractor be removed.

A tractor crashed into a building on Main Street in Seaforth, Ont. on Friday and was still there as crews worked to remove it Sunday, Oct. 15, 2023. (Sean Irvine/CTV News London)

Slowly and methodically, the John Deere tractor was tugged, pulled and maneuvered out of the front of the Re-Max Realty storefront it became embedded in on Oct. 13.

That night, a tractor driven by a 23-year-old Huron East resident, careened off Seaforth’s Main Street into the front of the two story brick building.

The tractor has been holding the structure up ever since.

That is until Friday, when braces were installed to carry the weight of the building, and allow for the meticulous removal of the tractor.

A tractor that has been stuck in a building in downtown Seaforth, Ont. since Oct. 13, 2023 finally was removed from the building on Dec. 8, 2023, much to the delight of the town. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)

“It was close up top. Good thing they let the air out of the tires, because I don’t think it would have come out unless they did,” said one of the onlookers.

While the tractor removal was a spectacle to behold, its removal means a large section of Main Street, which has been closed to vehicles since the crash, will reopen.

That’s a huge relief for the downtown businesses impacted.

A tractor that has been stuck in a building in downtown Seaforth, Ont. since Oct. 13, 2023 finally was removed from the building on Dec. 8, 2023, much to the delight of the town. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)

“It has definitely negatively impacted the businesses on the Main Street. It was nice to see it come out. It’s like a building has been lifted off my shoulders,” said Kendra Jewitt, owner and operators of Blooms N’ Rooms.

The plan for the damaged building, believed to be Seaforth’s first ever and oldest brick building, is for it to be fixed up and reopened.

That may take some time, but having the tractor gone, and the downtown fully open again, is a huge relief for Seaforth residents, who aren’t eager to see anymore “tractor pulls” on their main street.

A tractor that has been stuck in a building in downtown Seaforth, Ont. since Oct. 13, 2023 finally was removed from the building on Dec. 8, 2023, much to the delight of the town. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)

“It was neat to see it come out, but it’s going to be good to get the street back opened up and people flowing back into the businesses here in town,” said one of onlooker.

“It’s nice to get the street open, so the businesses can get going again. Although it was kind of nice walking across the street, without having to worry about traffic,” said another Seaforth resident.

The 23-year-old tractor driver has been charged with careless driving, failing to stop at a red light, and failing to remain at the scene of a crash. 

A tractor that has been stuck in a building in downtown Seaforth, Ont. since Oct. 13, 2023 finally was removed from the building on Dec. 8, 2023, much to the delight of the town. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)

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