Hail becoming a trend in Southern Alberta

Many Southern Albertans spent yet another weekend cleaning up after a storm.

Multiple thunderstorms rolled through our region, each one more destructive than the last.

Friday night, Taber residents watched streets flood, hail blocking storm sewers and covering lawns, and sidewalks.

Vehicles stalled in the water, some were even seen floating into the ditch.

Then Saturday, it was Lethbridge’s turn for golf ball sized hail.

This year alone, Alberta has produced enough weather related stories to last a lifetime, and it seems for many, discussing the damage is a common topic.

But with each severe thunderstorm warning comes a question-why is Southern Alberta seeing so much hail?

“Climate is in a constant state of flux and that’s why we go from really rainy weather and cool temperatures one day,” said Meteorologist Elwyn Holmberg. “Then the next day we’re up into the thirties. It’s because climate is fluctuating.”

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From risk of a sunburn to severe thunderstorms all in the same day.

The frequent hail has destroyed homes, vehicles and crops, leaving insurance companies struggling to keep up with the claims.

“The insurance industry, we’re paying out these claims year over year and they’re largely coming from Alberta,” said Heather Mack, Insurance Bureau of Canada. “Last year, 2012, 62 per cent of the natural disaster claims were in Alberta.”

The Insurance Bureau of Canada says 2013’s claims have already far surpassed the hundreds of millions claimed last year.

Hail, damaging winds and rainfall warnings seem to be the pattern Southern Albertans have been seeing. But with all that said about extreme weather, one question remains-will this continue to be a trend?

“We seem to be breaking records on that. And I think we’re probably going to see major changes continue for at least the short term,” said Holmberg.

With that warning, it should prompt Southern Albertans to take precautions when severe weather warnings are issued.

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