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Hail, flash floods hit Maple Ridge as thunderstorm slams Metro Vancouver

Click to play video 'Maple Ridge flooded amid unexpected thunderstorm' Maple Ridge flooded amid unexpected thunderstorm
Metro Vancouver was placed under a severe thunderstorm watch on Friday, as a storm cell swept into the eastern parts of the region. Viewers captured video of heavy rain and hail flooding some streets – Sep 15, 2018

It was a soggy, and a points wintry Friday afternoon for some Metro Vancouver residents, after a severe thunderstorm cropped up suddenly over the eastern part of the region.

Environment Canada issued a severe thunderstorm warning for the region’s northeast, including Coquitlam and Maple Ridge, and southeast, including Surrey and Langley around 4 p.m.

Environment Canada said a strong thunderstorm had manifested over Maple Ridge, stretching south over the Fraser River and moving slowly towards Fort Langley.

The agency warned of severe rain and pea-sized hail, which by 5 p.m. had already begun to douse Maple Ridge and Walnut Grove.

It said some areas could see rain accumulations of more than 25 millimetres in a one-hour period.

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There were also reports of flooding along River Road and at the Port Haney WestCoast Express Station. Trains were still operating but bus service was skipping the station.

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The RCMP also briefly closed River Road outside the station.

“Heavy downpours are likely to cause flash floods and water pooling on roads. Lightning kills and injures Canadians every year. Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors!” wrote Environment Canada.

The sudden storm caught many in the region off guard, with residents taking to social media to share images of hail and flash flooding, much of it in Maple Ridge.

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