April 27, 2017 2:33 pm
Updated: April 27, 2017 2:34 pm

Small tornado, downburst damaged barn near Thamesford: Environment Canada

Environment Canada officials have confirmed that a tornado, Canada's first recorded tornado of the year, touched down northeast of London earlier this month.

A. Bykov/Getty Images/File

Environment Canada officials have concluded that a small tornado, the country’s first recorded tornado of the year, and downburst winds caused significant damage to a barn northeast of the city earlier this month.

Several thunderstorms rolled through the region on April 11.

One in particular, which passed north of London as it tracked toward Woodstock, intensified briefly, producing wind gusts that tore a section of roof off a barn near Thamesford and downed several trees and power lines in the area, a weather advisory issued Thursday read.

A post-storm investigation by Environment Canada and damage analysis conducted by a Western University team revealed that a combination of downburst winds and an EF-1-rated tornado with peak winds of 150 km/h caused the damage.

The tornado, the advisory said, produced a path 11 kilometres long and 200 metres wide.

It’s not unheard of for these types of supercell storms to strike southwestern Ontario this early in the year. An EF-1 tornado was observed on Mar. 16, 2016 in Clifford, northwest of Kitchener.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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