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Tornado touched down southwest of Calgary: Environment Canada

Click to play video 'Tornado touches down in Tsuu T’ina Nation' Tornado touches down in Tsuu T’ina Nation

Watch above: A tornado touches down in the Tsuu T’ina Nation. Jayme Doll reports

CALGARY – A tornado warning ended for the city of Calgary at around 2 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon. Environment Canada confirmed the tornado touched down just north of Priddis at 12:53 p.m. Funnel clouds were seen west of Cochrane, over southern areas of Calgary and near Strathmore.

“We have had reports of damage on the Tsuu T’ina First Nation and it is possible that is the location where a touchdown has occurred,” said Environment Canada’s Bill McMurtry.

READ MORE: Dorothy damaged during storm that spurred tornado southwest of Calgary

Scroll down for photos of the storm

Tornado damage Alberta
Tree damage on Tsuu T’ina First Nation after a tornado on July 22, 2015. Jayme Doll / Global News

Sgt. Shane Powers with Tsuu T’ina Nation Police Service told Global News one house sustained minor damage and a barn sustained major damage. He said trees have fallen on power lines and crews were working to restore power just after 5 p.m. Sgt. Powers said no one was hurt.

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Enmax Tsuu Tina
Enmax crews work to repair power lines after a tornado on Tsuu T’ina First Nation on July 22, 2015. Jayme Doll / Global News

McMurtry said the tornado did not touch down in Calgary. He said there have been eight tornadoes to hit Calgary in the last 40 years or so, but all were at the very lowest end of the scale used to rank damage.

Tornado Calgary
A view of the storm system amid a tornado warning from the University of Calgary Campus looking toward the Bragg Creek area. July 22, 2015. Neda Boroumand submitted

The weather alerts came a day after a storm spurred tornado warnings in Rocky View County near Airdrie and Crossfield and Mountain View County near Carstairs and Stirlingville.

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Wednesday’s storm watch was originally issued at 10:55 a.m.

READ MORE: Myths and facts about tornadoes 

Watch below: Global’s video coverage of the funnel clouds and tornado in the Calgary area on Wednesday afternoon

The chief of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) said a number of buildings asked people to evacuate Wednesday afternoon, but said that’s not the best practice.

“We ask you not to evacuate,” said Tom Sampson. “The majority of people killed in tornadoes are killed in the debris that comes out from them. You’re safest indoors and away from the windows.”

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IN PHOTOS: Funnel cloud spotted over Calgary, parts of southern Alberta

Sampson said emergency centres didn’t open in this incident, but city staff were positioned in the Bow Tower to observe the weather conditions for the first time in five years. When asked about any plans to install warning signals in such emergency situations, Sampson said it’s hard to determine their efficacy.

“The sound transmission…and to get them to all locations of the city is almost impossible, so no plans at this point to install air-raid type sirens.”

Watch below: Some of the best videos we received from Global viewers of a funnel cloud forming over Calgary on Wednesday afternoon.

If threatening weather approaches, remember to take shelter immediately. In the case of a tornado, it’s best to take shelter in a basement. If that is not possible, put yourself as far away from outside walls as possible.

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“If you hear a roaring sound or see a funnel cloud, swirling debris near the ground, flying debris, or any threatening weather approaching, take shelter immediately,” said Environment Canada in its alert.

READ MORE: What to do during a tornado warning

Environment Canada said reports indicated the severe thunderstorm was located just west of southwest Calgary at 1 p.m. and was moving toward the southeast at 30 km/h. The neighbourhoods of Bridlewood and Shawnessy were in the path of this tornado, said the agency. There were no reports of anyone being injured.

The thunderstorm also produced golf-ball-sized hail.

Loonie hail

READ MORE: Thunderstorms 101

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Funnel cloud
The funnel cloud amid a tornado warning on July 22, 2015, taken from a southwest Calgary balcony. Kevin Berggren submitted

READ MORE: Tornado warning ends as severe storm batters Calgary area

Severe thunderstorm watches were in effect for other areas of southern Alberta until about 7 p.m.

For the latest Calgary weather forecast, click here.

The difference between a special weather statement, a severe thunderstorm watch and a severe thunderstorm warning

Environment Canada issues a special weather statement when there is potential for an event that may approach the warning or watch criteria.

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A severe thunderstorm watch is issued when there is a good chance of severe weather developing.

A severe thunderstorm warning has four elements: winds greater than 90 km/h; hail greater than 2 cm; flooding rains; or a tornado.

To get real-time weather for your area, download the Global News Skytracker weather app.

Tornado warning
A look at the tornado on Tsuu T’ina First Nation on July 22, 2015. Cody Sewall submitted
Tornado Tsuu T'ina
Photo showing a tornado on July 22, 2015 at the Tsuu T’ina First Nation, Alberta. Steff One Spot submitted

With files from Nicole Mortillaro, Tony Tighe and Jayme Doll

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