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Ontario accounts for nearly half of Canada's 2020 tornadoes so far

Monday, February 1st 2021, 11:50 pm - Ontario has had 30 tornadoes confirmed in 2020 so far, making up nearly half of Canada's tally for the year to date.

Summer 2020 has been an active tornado season in Ontario, which kicked off into high gear with what was eventually deemed an outbreak, even before the season technically started.

Following the June 10th event, in which seven tornadoes were confirmed, there have been 23 more verified in the province, including another outbreak on July 19. The latest tornadoes occurred on Thursday, Sept. 3.

Canada 2020 tornadoes (Sept. 6)

As of Sept. 6, Canada has had 66 tornadoes in 2020. With 30 twisters confirmed in Ontario so far, with more events under investigation, the province has had the most tornadoes in the country to date, far ahead of Alberta's 12, the second-highest total in Canada.

Investigators at the Western University-based Northern Tornadoes Project (NTP) have been working with Environment Canada to help verify tornadoes across the country through ground surveys, witness reports and surveillance data.

DATES AND LOCATIONS OF ONTARIO'S TORNADOES IN 2O20

June 8

Ontario's first tornado of the year occurred in Nestor Falls, with the first 22 km of the storm's nearly 32-km damage path (width exceeds 3 km) designated to the EF-2-rated twister. It has a preliminary width of 1.5 km.

June 10

Belgrave: Touched down at 5:45 p.m. EDT, had a path of 5.5 kilometres in length, with damage incurred to trees and farm hutches. Its winds speeds were 90 km/h. Rated EF-0.

Brussels: Touched down at 6 p.m. EDT and had a path of 3.1 kilometres in length, with 90 km/ winds, causing damage to trees. Rated EF-0.

Bracebridge: Touched down at 7:30 p.m. EDT and had a path of 5.6 kilometres in length, with 150 km/h winds, causing structural and tree damage. Rated EF-1.

Mary Lake: Touched down at 7:45 p.m. EDT and had a path of 24.6 kilometres in length, with 190 km/h winds, causing structural and tree damage. Rated EF-2.

Jun10OntarioTornadoes

Newbury: Touched down at 7:50 p.m. EDT and had a path of 17 kilometres in length, with 130 km/h winds, causing structural and tree damaged. Rated EF-0.

Belmont: Touched down at 7:50 p.m. EDT and had a path of 18 kilometres in length, with 150 km/h winds, causing structural and tree damage. Rated EF-1.

Baysville: Touched down at 8 p.m. EDT and had a path of 5.6 kilometres in length, with 145 km/h winds, causing tree damage. Rated EF-1.

June 23

A tornado was captured on video around 3 p.m. Tuesday afternoon in the Kawartha Lakes region as thunderstorms tracked through. It was confirmed to have occurred in Sturgeon Point and was given an EF-1 rating based on an NTP ground and drone survey. It had estimated maximum wind speeds of 145 km/h, a track length of 5 km (over land) and maximum path width of 120 metres.

June 30

Witnesses captured photos of a landspout tornado in the Kerwood area. No damage reports were received and no visible damage was found during satellite imagery review. Therefore, it was given an EF-0 rating.

July 10

On July 10, a rare landspout tornado was spotted and confirmed in Milton during a severe thunderstorm. The twister was rated an EF-0 and no damage reports were received.

Milton tornado

July 11

A landspout tornado occurred in Lake Nipissing and was rated EF-0.

July 16

Witnesses captured video and photos of a tornado west of Brantford, but no damage was reported, thus earning an EF-0 rating. Further investigation pending, including satellite imagery review.

July 19

Sunday's tornadoes were spawned from an intense line of storms that rocketed through southwestern Ontario toward the GTA's western edge late morning and early afternoon.

Lucan: An EF-1 rating, north of Lucan, with a preliminary track length of 2.4 km and maximum winds of 135 km/h. Several farm structures in the area were badly damaged, as were some trees.

Belmont: An EF-0 rating, with a preliminary track length of 9.3 km and maximum wind gusts of 125 km/h. It caused damage to roof shingles and trees.

Lambton Shores area: An EF-1 rating, occurred east-northeast of Sarnia. It had maximum wind speeds of 155 km/h and a preliminary track length of 15.4 km.

July19tornadoes

Beachville: An EF-1 rating, occurred through Beachville, a town near Woodstock. Tree damage caused by the heavy winds. The wind speeds were clocked at a max of 150 km/h. The track length is estimated to have been 2.8 km, with the tornado's width pegged at 100 metres.

Gads Hill: An EF-1 rating, it had maximum wind speeds of 150 km/h with a preliminary track length of 4.2 km. It resulted in damage to a farm and trees.

Blythe area: An EF-1 rating, it had maximum wind speeds of 135 km/h and a preliminary track length of 6.7 km.

Kettle Point: No official damage indicators appear to have been impacted, so was given EF-0 rating. Spotted at 10:45 a.m. Had a 1.07 km track length.

St Columban: As no official damage indicators appear to have been impacted, so given an EF-0 rating. Spotted at 11:15 a.m, witness reported a funnel cloud where nearby crop damage was reported. Track length was 6.43 kilometeres.

Aug. 2

Though consistently warm, Civic Holiday weekend featured some powerful storms, marked by pounding rains in some areas -- and, it seems, at least four tornadoes.

Camden East: A high-end EF-0, it was spotted at 2:35 p.m., with maximum winds of 130 km/h, and some local damage reported.

Ontario tornado summary Aug. 2

Oxford Mills: A low-end EF-0, this twister was spotted at 4:25 p.m., with winds near 90 km/h. Damage associated with this tornado was light.

Kinmount: An EF-2 rating, this tornado was reported at 4:50 p.m. and boasted maximum winds of 190 km/h, causing considerable damage.

Aug. 3

The holiday Monday also yielded severe weather, with tornado warnings and watches issued.

At one point, Environment Canada issued a tornado warning for a weak twister reported by a weather spotter at approximately 12:40 p.m. north of Mitchell. Some tree damage has been reported, and the event is still under investigation and has not been confirmed as a tornado.

Aug. 4

Palmerston: Rated as an EF-0, the tornado was spotted at 3:45 p.m., with maximum wind speeds of 115 km/h. Track length was 1.1 kilometres. Weak tree damage was reported in Palmerston after a storm passed through the area.

While the data gathered supports the event classification as a tornado, initial review of evidence could not rule out a gustnado as a possible cause of the weak damage occurring over a relatively short distance.

Aug. 27

On Thursday, intense thunderstorms swept through portions of southern Ontario, spawning two tornadoes that were confirmed by the Northern Tornadoes Project.

Aug. 27 Ontario tornado summary

Mount Carmel: An EF-1 rating, this twister was spotted at 2:30 p.m., with maximum winds of 155 km/h. Track length was 7.1 kilometres, severely damaging a century barn.

Union: An EF-1 rating, this tornado was spotted at 3:15 p.m. and boasted maximum winds of 150 km/h. Track length was 5.2 kilometres, causing a small century barn to shift its foundation.

Aug. 28

Meanwhile, more severe thunderstorms roared through southwestern Ontario on Aug. 28, causing damage in the Point Clark/Huron-Kinloss Township area. The Northern Tornadoes Project confirmed the damage to be of a tornado.

Point Clark: Rated EF-0, the tornado occurred at 10:15 p.m., with maximum wind speeds of 130 km/h. The track length was 300 metres. A short track of trees was knocked over, with some falling on houses and power poles causing significant damage.

Sept. 3

Washago: Rated EF-1, with maximum wind speeds of 145 km/h, the tornado had a track length of 1.85 kilometres with a maximum width of 90 metres. It produced damage mainly to mature trees along a narrow path.

Sept. 3 tornado summary

Port Colborne: Rated high-end EF-0, with maximum wind speeds of 125 km/h, the track length was 1.1 kilometres with a maximum width of 50 metres. The tornado produced damage to some trees and houses.

CAN ONTARIO EXPERIENCE TORNADO OUTBREAKS LIKE TORNADO ALLEY IN THE U.S.?

Thumbnail courtesy of Saba Hasan. An EF-0-rated landspout tornado occurred in Milton, Ont. on July 10, 2020.

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