WATCH ABOVE: Timelapse video of severe thunderstorm passing through Toronto
TORONTO – Heavy storms slammed the Greater Toronto Area and parts of southern Ontario Sunday putting a damper on long weekend events, including an outdoor music festival.
Environment Canada issued a thunderstorm warning just before 5 p.m. ET and ended the warning around 6:30 p.m. A thunderstorm watch also ended around 11 p.m.
Severe thunderstorm warnings were downgraded to watches for Halton Hills, Milton, Mississauga, Brampton, Vaughan, Richmond Hill, Markham, Newmarket, Georgina, and northern York Region. Parts of southern Ontario including the Kitchener-Waterloo area were also under severe thunderstorm warning.
“A significant, widespread severe weather situation is underway across part of Southern Ontario. Several clusters of strong to severe thunderstorms will continue to affect parts of the watch areas well into the evening ahead of a cold front,” Environment Canada said in a statement.
WATCH ABOVE: Aftermath of severe thunderstorm in Toronto
“Very strong wind gusts can damage buildings, down trees and blow large vehicles off the road. Remember, severe thunderstorms can produce tornadoes. Be prepared for severe weather. Take cover immediately, if threatening weather approaches.”
The approaching weather forced organizers with Veld Music Festival to evacuate the festival site at Downsview Park.
“At approximately 5:00 p.m. on Sunday August 2 2015, we experienced a severe weather alert at Veld Music Festival at Downsview Park,” said INK entertainment in a statement.
WATCH ABOVE: Reaction after Veld Music Festival cancelled
“Due to approaching high winds, lightning and hail storms, we are engaging our safety protocol and evacuating the site. The safety of our patrons is our number one priority.”
The final day of the two-day event was cancelled just before 6 p.m.
A watch is issued when conditions are favourable for severe weather. A warning is when hazardous weather is imminent or occurring.
The severe weather system knocked out power to nearly 50,000 Hydro One customers in southern Ontario. According to the company’s website the utility hopes to have power restored by Sunday evening.
Meanwhile, Toronto Hydro reported multiple outages across the city but did not indicate the approximate number of people affected.
Below are imaged of the storms that hit southern Ontario