A state of emergency has been declared in a rural municipality near Winnipeg after a giant wall of ice smashed through homes on Friday. About 20 homes on three streets were damaged, and many were destroyed.

Strong winds pushed ice on Dauphin Lake onto homes and cottages on Ochre Beach, a summer community about 200 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg.

“Fortunately, nobody was hurt,” Deputy Reeve Clayton Watts said. “There was extensive damage, though.”

Some homes were completely destroyed. Others, like the one belonging to Donna Billows, were filled up when the charging ice flow pushed though doors and windows.

“I happened to look out the window and saw the ice just coming, just moving so quickly,” Billows told CTV News.

Billows, who was sitting down for dinner with her husband at the time, said she had little time to react.

“He said ‘Grab your purse, grab whatever you can. Get the keys. We’ve got to get out of here,’” Billows said.

Her home was packed with ice.

The community has rallied around Billows and others affected by the disaster.

“There were people working here that I didn’t even know who they were,” Billows said. “They just came in and said “What can we do?”

But just two years after dealing with floods that caused extensive damage in the community, Billows has had enough.

“Really, I don’t think I want to live here anymore,” she said.

Dennis Stykalo’s vacation home, which his family has owned for 38 years, was completely destroyed.

“Ice has come on this property historically over the years but never this close or of this magnitude,” he said.

The municipality is finding places for permanent residents to stay.

With a report from CTV Winnipeg’s Ben Miljure