‘Severe thunderstorms’ forecast for B.C. interior, lightning possible in Metro Vancouver

Taken in Kitsilano, Vancouver. Courtesy: Michael Sean O'Rafferty.
Taken in Kitsilano, Vancouver. Courtesy: Michael Sean O'Rafferty. Courtesy: Michael Sean O'Rafferty

Thunder and lightning is in the forecast for much of British Columbia, as a low-pressure front moves in to replace the province’s first blast of hot summer weather.

“After three hot days — Saturday, Sunday, Monday — with temperatures above 30 C in a number of areas in southern B.C., we have cooler air at all levels of the atmosphere, and really, it’s the cool air aloft that’s the key to triggering thunderstorms,” Global BC chief meteorologist Mark Madryga said.

Read more: Heat warnings lift in B.C., but southern Interior storms approach

Wide swaths of the central and southeastern Interior were under sever thunderstorm watch on Tuesday, with warnings in place for the Prince George and Shuswap regions.

“Even here in Metro Vancouver, the South Coast, we could easily have some lightning late afternoon, early evening,” Madryga said. “But it’s mostly rain showers.”

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Read more: Severe thunderstorm watch issued Tuesday for the Okanagan, Shuswap

Environment Canada warned that people are injured and killed every year by lightning, and advised staying indoors during thunderstorms.

Conditions are expected to be more severe throughout the interior, Madryga said, with heavy downpours, widespread lightning and hail.

The system is expected to persist throughout the evening and early Wednesday before moving east to Alberta, he added.

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