Update: Severe thunderstorm warning for Central Alberta

Central Albertans continue to be under a severe thunderstorm warning.

Conditions are favourable for the development of dangerous thunderstorms that may be capable of producing strong wind gusts, damaging hail and heavy rain.

An unstable airmass over Alberta will set the stage for thunderstorms this afternoon and this evening. Some of these thunderstorms will have the potential to become severe. Hail to the size of golf balls or perhaps even larger, as well as wind gusts in excess of 90 KM/H, are possible with these severe thunderstorms.

In addition, later this afternoon and this evening, it appears there exists some potential for a few tornadoes. As the day progresses and the scenario becomes more clear, parts of the thunderstorm watch may be upgraded to a tornado watch.

Very large hail can damage property, break windows, dent vehicles and cause serious injury. Strong wind gusts can toss loose objects, damage weak buildings, break branches off trees and overturn large vehicles. Remember, severe thunderstorms can produce tornadoes. Be prepared for severe weather. Take cover immediately, if threatening weather approaches. Lightning kills and injures Canadians every year. Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors!

Severe thunderstorm watches are issued when atmospheric conditions are favourable for the development of thunderstorms that could produce one or more of the following: large hail, damaging winds, torrential rainfall.

Please continue to monitor alerts and forecasts issued by Environment Canada. To report severe weather, send an email to ec.storm.ec@canada.ca or tweet reports using #ABStorm.

On Wednesday, Dan Kulak Environment Canada meteorologist in Edmonton said though the temperatures are high enough to cause a heat warning, it doesn’t seem like previous record highs will be broken.

“You’re not quite there in Red Deer,” Kulak said on Wednesday.

The previous record for July 26 is 32.7 C, which set back in 1984, while Wednesday is only expected to reach a high of 30 C, Kulak said.

On Thursday the temperature is expected to reach a high of 29 C, which is just below the previous record of 33.9 C, which was set in 1975.

A period with maximum daily temperatures reaching near 29C or above and minimum overnight temperatures near 14C or above is expected to begin today and will last until Friday.

Residents of and visitors to the above warned regions are advised to take the following precautions:

  • Consider rescheduling outdoor activities to cooler hours of the day.
  • Take frequent breaks from the heat, spending time outdoors at your house or at cooled public buildings (including malls or indoor pools).
  • Drink plenty of water and other non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages to stay hydrated.
  • Do not leave any person or pet inside a closed vehicle, for any length of time.

Monitor for symptoms of heat stroke or heat exhaustion, such as high body temperature, lack of sweat, confusion, fainting, and unconsciousness. Particular vigilance is urged for vulnerable individuals, including children, seniors, individuals with pre-existing lung, heart, kidney, nervous system, mental health or diabetic conditions, outdoor workers, as well as those who are socially isolated.

For more heat health advice, including for vulnerable individuals, visit www.ahs.ca/heat.

Heat Warnings are issued when very high temperature conditions are expected to pose an elevated risk of heat illnesses, such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

Extreme heat affects everyone.

The risks are greater for young children, pregnant women, older adults, people with chronic illnesses and people working or exercising outdoors.

Watch for the effects of heat illness: swelling, rash, cramps, fainting, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and the worsening of some health conditions.

Check on older family, friends and neighbours. Make sure they are cool and drinking water

Never leave people or pets inside a parked vehicle.

Ask a health professional how medications or health conditions can affect your risk in the heat.

Watch for the symptoms of heat illness: dizziness/fainting; nausea/vomiting; rapid breathing and heartbeat; extreme thirst; decreased urination with unusually dark urine.

Heat Warning in effect for:

Camrose Co. near Bashaw and Meeting Creek

City of Red Deer

Co. of Paintearth near Halkirk and Big Knife Prov. Park

Co. of Stettler near Big Valley

Co. of Stettler near Botha and Gadsby

Co. of Stettler near Byemoor and Endiang

Co. of Stettler near Donalda

Co. of Stettler near Stettler Nevis and Rochon Sands

Flagstaff Co. near Forestburg and Galahad

Lacombe Co. near Clive Alix and Mirror

Lacombe Co. near Eckville

Lacombe Co. near Lacombe Blackfalds and Bentley

Ponoka Co. near Ponoka and Maskwacis

Red Deer Co. near Elnora Lousana and Delburne

Red Deer Co. near Penhold Innisfail and Bowden

Red Deer Co. near Pine Lake

Red Deer Co. near Spruce View and Red Lodge Prov. Park

Red Deer Co. near Sylvan Lake and Stephansson House

Please continue to monitor alerts and forecasts issued by Environment Canada. To report severe weather, send an email to ec.storm.ec@canada.ca or tweet reports using #ABStorm.

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