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Storm leaves thousands without power in southern Ontario

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Caroline Floyd
Meteorologist

Sunday, October 15, 2017, 9:05 PM - A cold front swept across southern Ontario on Sunday afternoon, serving as the catalyst to a powerful wind storm which left thousands without power throughout the region.

Fallen trees, flying debris, and multiple power outages continued to be reported on Sunday night. Toronto Hyrdro estimated that at least 25,000 customers were without power in the city. Further east, Powersource reported that at least 2,100 customers were without power in Vaughan on Sunday night. Hundreds of customers also reported blackouts in Mississauga, Kitchener, and Peterborough.

Winds up to nearly 70 km/h and heavy rain were observed across the region on Sunday afternoon, with Toronto and London experiencing just over 100 km/h gusts.

Environment Canada wind warnings began to drop in the late afternoon in southwestern Ontario, remaining in effect near the Golden Horseshoe and further north toward Haliburton and Kingston.

Below: Strong winds near London, Ont. captured on camera as the storm approaches



Keep on top of active weather by visiting the ALERTS page.


Weather Highlights

  • Winds peak late Sunday afternoon for most of southern Ontario, should ease overnight into Monday
  • Gusts of 60 to 80 km/h observed across southern Ontario. London International Airport and Toronto Pearson International Airport recorded 104 km/h and 102 km/h winds respectively
  • The passage of the cold front will sent temperatures plummeting, knocking 10 to 15 degrees off of the morning high



FALL IS HERE: After a summer that varied from coast to coast, what can Canadians expect from fall? Find out with The Weather Network’s 2017 Fall Forecast | FORECAST & MAPS HERE


Timing

Heavier, more persistent rain shifted to the north with the warm front overnight, leaving the Nickel Belt and Sault Ste. Marie region rainy, and drizzle and fog over most of southern Ontario as it sat in the warm sector of the frontal system. 

This break in the rain for the south allowed temperatures to stay steamy by mid-October standards from Ottawa to Windsor, with spots like Chatham and Niagara topping 20 degrees, even at 6 a.m.

Winds out of the southwest will start to pick up after dawn, as the strong low pressure system moves out of the U.S. Upper Midwest and makes its way through the northern Great Lakes into Ontario.



The strongest winds - with the potential for damaging gusts - arrive in the afternoon, however, as the sharp cold front starts to make its way across the region.

With the front comes the risk of thunderstorms, some potentially reaching severe limits.

The main risk with these storms is damaging wind gusts - these coming in addition to the strong wind gusts from the cold front itself. The risk of storms rises through the morning hours in the southwest, clearing Windsor by early afternoon. The thunderstorm threat shifts slowly eastward with the front through the day, ramping up in the GTA around 2 p.m., and in eastern Ontario in the late afternoon or early evening.

WATCH BELOW: A severe wind setup


High will be reached across the region during the morning hours, with temperatures falling sharply in the wake of the front under the influence of strong winds out of the northwest. Monday will dawn much clearer but at least 10 degrees colder across the board, with Monday's highs expected to struggle into the mid teens in the southwest and only the high single digits in the east.

As the weather roller coaster rolls on, however, temperatures will begin to climb again for the second half of this week. "Late this week and next weekend could be quite warm - the grande finale for warmth!" says The Weather Network meteorologist Dr. Doug Gillham. "A much colder pattern is expected for the final week of October."

WATCH BELOW: "That's a big one." When your Saturday morning walk turns wild.


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