‘Not a friendly storm’: Too soon to give Manitoba tornado a rating, Environment Canada says

There have been no reports of damage or injury after a tornado touched down north of Winnipeg on Tuesday evening, but an Environment Canada meteorologist says it was a significant storm for the area.

“We had a thunderstorm kind of roll through the Interlake region yesterday evening, and with that, it actually spawned a tornado just east of Teulon,” James Colangelo told 680 CJOB’s The Start on Wednesday.

“There was also a report of golf ball-sized hail in Kormano, Man., just north of there. Not a friendly storm.”

Colangelo said it’s too soon to suggest what rating the tornado might receive, but that will be coming shortly.

Tornado intensity is rated on the Fujita scale — from an F0 twister causing light damage to trees and buildings, all the way to an F5, which causes serious destruction.

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Manitoba was home to Canada’s only recorded F5 tornado, when a storm ripped through the town of Elie in 2007.

Read more: Tornado touches down north of Winnipeg: Environment Canada

Drenna Campbell, who lives north of Teulon, told 680 CJOB she experienced hail that was “at least” golf ball-sized Tuesday evening, causing damage to her vehicles and leaving a lot of debris in the area.

“Just after 6 p.m., it started to all of a sudden hail pretty bad,” she said.

“I went to the window, looked out, it was just white. You could see, on the patio, huge hail balls, so I just grabbed my raincoat and ran out right away.

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“Your first intuition is to look at your vehicle. I kind of did a little angry dance and yelled some words I was raised not to say when I saw the damage.”

Hail that fell north of Teulon, Man., in Tuesday’s storm. Submitted / Drenna Campbell

Environment Canada is encouraging Manitobans to stay safe during extreme weather.

If you’re caught out in a storm like Tuesday’s, Colangelo said, stay away from cars, mobile homes, or similar structures and vehicles.

“If you happen to be out driving and you don’t have any shelter to go to, and you caught in the storm, … if you see the tornado, you want to get out of your car and go to a low-lying area, preferably a ditch.”

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