Heavy rain, large hail and strong wind gusts are in the forecast for parts of Alberta on Thursday.
A line of thunderstorms was expected to develop early Thursday afternoon and move eastward through the afternoon and evening. Some of the thunderstorms had the potential to become severe, according to Global Edmonton chief meteorologist Jesse Beyer.
“Active weather is expected to be the most severe south of Edmonton,” Beyer said.
“Storms will be moving eastward after initiation off of the foothills. The main threats will be damaging wind gusts, and nearly tennis ball-sized hail. Heavy rain and numerous lightning strikes are also expected.”
On Thursday morning, Environment Canada issued severe thunderstorm watches for several regions south of Edmonton, stretching as far west as Nordegg, to Stettler in the east. The watches also encompassed the Drayton Valley area, south to Airdrie.
Early Thursday afternoon, the watches for areas including Rocky Mountain House, Drayton Valley, Devon, Rimbey, Pigeon Lake, Red Deer, Ponoka, Innisfail and Stettler were upgraded to warnings.
Those warnings were later lifted but a number of severe thunderstorm warnings were in effect for other parts of central and southern Alberta on Thursday night. By 10 p.m., however, all warnings had been lifted.
The below video was taken in Red Deer at around 3 p.m. Thursday.
A severe thunderstorm warning was also issued for Calgary shortly after 4 p.m. The warning was later lifted.
Watches were also issued for parts of northern Alberta, including the Peace River, Wabasca and Cold Lake regions.
Edmonton was placed under a severe thunderstorm watch just after 2 p.m. By 4:45 p.m., the watch for Edmonton had been dropped.
“As for Edmonton, the chance of thundershowers is in the forecast,” Beyer said. “However, most of the severe storms will remain south of city limits. There is a chance our area will be threatened by a strong storm, so monitor forecast details throughout the day.”
Several people in and around Calgary also captured photos of a cloudburst, a weather phenomenon in which a sudden, very heavy rainfall falls over a short period of time in a localized area.
Severe thunderstorm watches are issued when conditions are favourable for the development of thunderstorms that could produce one or more of the following: large hail, damaging winds or torrential rainfall.
For a complete list of areas in Alberta where a weather alert has been issued, click here.
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