Saturday, July 20, 2013

One fatality as severe weather sweeps Quebec & Ontario

It is still rather warm and humid this morning in Montreal, but an end to the heatwave is just hours away as drier air settles into the region. The temperature will reach 28C today but drop to 13C tonight, which would be the coolest this month. Sunday will be sunny and dry with pleasant highs of 22C (72F).

From Ottawa Valley TVC via Twitter, trailers destroyed by wind in Pembroke, Ontario.
Yesterday was a wild weather day that featured cell after cell of strong thunderstorms sliding along a cold front draped across the St. Lawrence Valley. The front generated strong southwest winds ahead of it that helped push temperatures up to 33C (92F) in the Montreal metro region and as high as 36C (98F) in Burlington, Vermont. It also produced dew points in Montreal that are more common of south Florida reaching nearly 26C (79F) at my home here on L'Ile Perrot. That is the highest I have ever seen in my years watching Montreal weather. All that juiced up the atmosphere and led to the severe storms that swept the region between 2 and 8pm Friday. The activity started in eastern Ontario with places like Pembroke and Kemptville reporting wind damage, power outages and heavy rain. Once arriving in Quebec, the storms toppled trees and power lines cutting hydro to nearly 500,000 homes in the province. Flooding and debris closed several highways including the Laurentian Autoroute at the 640. The storms were deadly with a 21 year old woman being struck and killed by a tree in Boucherville on the south shore. Several others were injured including 8 campers in Prevost in the Laurentians. Regions north of Montreal in Laval and the lower Laurentians were the hardest hit.

Nearly 30mm of rain fell here on L'Ile Perrot between 5 and 7pm with another 8mm in showers this morning. Winds gusted to over 40km/h most of the day here and peaked at 82km/h during the thunderstorm at Trudeau Airport. While many tornado warnings and watches were issued, only funnel clouds were spotted and Environment Canada believes most of the Quebec damage was caused by straight line winds.

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