Tornado Watch issued by Enviro Canada for Lac La Biche Area
Jul 12, 2012 12:57 pm
While much of Southern Alberta is under a severe thunderstorm watch after a week of unseasonably warm temperatures over much of the province, the Lac La Biche area has been put on a tornado watch by Environment Canada weather specialists.
Environment Canada issued the warning just after noon today (July 12), cautioning residents within a wide swath of northeastern Alberta to be wary of the potential for high winds, driving rain, hail, and even tornadoes.
The watch has been issued for areas within and around Lac La Biche County, including Heart Lake, Plamondon, Hylo, Avenir, Lakeland Provincial Park, Square Lake, La Corey, Bonnyville, Cold Lake and Bonnyville.
Prepare for action
The warning from Environment Canada, sent to local media states: "Conditions are favourable for the development of severe thunderstorms with the potential to produce tornadoes. These severe thunderstorms will also have the potential to produce very large hail..Flooding rain..Deadly lightning and powerful winds.
"Use this time to secure outdoor property and to ensure family members and co-workers are prepared to take action should the severe weather approach. Environment Canada continues to monitor the situation closely for severe thunderstorm development and possible tornado warnings.
"Please continue to monitor your local media or weatheradio for further updates. Should severe weather approach or if you feel threatened do not wait for warnings to take action..Take shelter immediately.
"Should you spot a funnel cloud or tornado...And only if it is safe to do so...You can call 1-800-239-0484 to report your sighting"
Although there have been many severe thunderstorm warnings for the Lac La Biche area over the years, including one storm five years ago that had strong enough winds to fell hundreds of trees at Sir Winston Churchill Provincial Park, the last documented tornado in the area was a funnel cloud that appeared over Lac La Biche Lake near Plamondon in July of 2000. The last reported ground tornado was on July 30 of 1993, just one day before the start of Pow Wow Days. Several downtown businesses and area homes were damaged by high winds, and a reported tornado smashed through a home in the Missiwawi Lake area. Tornadoes were also reported in Heart Lake, Beaver Lake and Churchill Park. No one was injured in that storm.