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South Saskatchewan storm leads to first confirmed tornado of 2023

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South Saskatchewan storm leads to first confirmed tornado of 2023
Heavy rain, flooding, severe hail and a tornado hit Regina in a matter of minutes Saturday night, all thanks to a supercell storm that rolled through the area – May 28, 2023

Heavy rain, flooding, severe hail and a tornado hit Regina in a matter of minutes Saturday night, all thanks to a supercell storm that rolled through the area.

Around 9 p.m. Saturday, tornado warnings were sent out by Environment Canada, urging residents to shelter in place and get to low ground.

On Sunday, Environment Canada confirmed a tornado did in fact touch down, and The Weather Network said it was the first confirmed tornado in Canada of 2023.

“We were able to identify from ground circulation which is an indication that the funnel itself is actually on the ground, so that confirmed it as a tornado and it was approximately 6 km southeast of Regina around 8:55 p.m.,” Environment Canada meteorologist Chris Stammers said.

Courtesy of Matthew Shirley

Stammers said the tornado stuck around for just a few minutes and as of Sunday afternoon, no damage had been reported.

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But that wasn’t the only severe weather event Saturday night.

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Regina’s underpasses were once again victim to flash flooding and water backlogs after heavy rain fell in Queen City.

Regina Police responded to multiple vehicles stranded in the water.

By Sunday morning the water had receded, and traffic was moving once again, but others are cleaning up the mess.

Shoppers Drug Mart on Broad Street is closed until further notice due to flooding in the store.

There were also reports of toonie-sized hail coming down across Regina.

“Anytime you get what we call a ‘supercell thunderstorm’ which is a thunderstorm with a rotation in it, you get almost always severe hail with it as well,” Stammers said.

Stammers said active thunderstorm patterns will continue over the next few days before making their way east, bringing warmer temperatures into southern Saskatchewan by the middle of the week.

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