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Strong wind gusts cause huge temperature rise in Lethbridge, Alberta

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Cheryl Santa Maria
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 6:24 PM -

After a slow start to February, an active weather pattern is moving into the Prairies -- bringing the potential for up to 10 cm of snow.

On Wednesday, strong winds were reported in parts of Alberta, causing warm air to rush into the city of Lethbridge.

"Between 10 and 11 a.m., the temperature at Lethbridge County Airport rose from -12°C to 2°C," explains Weather Network meteorologist Monica Vaswani.

Wind gusts as high as 80 km/h were recorded around that time.

"The warm temps will be accompanied by very gusty west winds with gusts over 100 km/h likely for Pincher Creek and Lethbridge Wednesday,"adds Weather Network meteorologist Gina Ressler.

Prairie motorists, in the meantime, are being warned to slow down and drive according to the weather conditions.

 "It doesn’t take much snow or wind to make for very poor highway conditions across the Prairies, so travelers should be prepared," Ressler says.


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It isn't uncommon for Chinook winds to cause a dramatic rise in temperature.

The greatest recorded temperature change in 24 hours caused by a Chinook occurred on January 15, 1972, in Loma, Montana.

A mind-boggling 57°C rise occurred, with temperatures climbing from -48°C to 9°C in that period.


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