- Environment Canada listed that a tornado touched down at the UBC during Saturday’s storm, the city’s first in almost 50 years.
- An unusual and brief tornado watch was issued for Metro Vancouver and Howe Sound, lasting around 24 minutes.
- The tornado was assessed as EF0 by the storm damage survey, the lowest level on the Enhanced Fujita scale.
The National Weather Service and the Northern Tornadoes Project conducted an onsite storm damage investigation on Sunday, preliminary findings indicating that a tornado struck the University Golf Club around 5:10 p.m. on Nov. 6.
On Saturday evening, an unusual and brief tornado watch was issued for Metro Vancouver and Howe Sound, lasting around 24 minutes.
A waterspout was sighted off the coast near Vancouver International Airport when a tornado formed over water (YVR).
According to Environment Canada, the waterspout was the same cell that swept through UBC, bringing severe winds that destroyed trees, stopped roads, and affected traffic.
How did it Happen?
According to Bobby Sekhon, a meteorologist from Environment and Climate Change Canada, the right conditions were required for Saturday’s tornado to form.
He explained, “We had a cold trough of low pressure off the west coast of British Columbia.”
“We had some rather warm ocean water, then some spins in the atmosphere and the conditions were just there to generate that tornado just west of YVR, which finally made its way into UBC.”
According to Environment Canada, the tornado impacted the university campus and produced hail, rain, and terrible winds of 90 to 110 miles per hour.
How uncommon is it?
It’s a weather occurrence, according to Sekhon, that’s “very rare.”
According to Sekhon, the last tornado documented in Vancouver was 54 years ago, in 1967; however, one was registered in Pitt Meadows in 1991.
“There have only been seven documented tornadoes in the Vancouver area in the last 70 years… and to have one in November is incredibly rare,” he said.
According to Sekhon, the temperature in November is cooler, making it difficult for cells to form that could cause tornadoes. Tornadoes, he claimed, are more common in the spring and summer.
How powerful was it?
The tornado was assessed as EF0 by the storm damage survey, the lowest level on the Enhanced Fujita scale, which rates a tornado’s severity based on predicted wind speeds and damage.
The most severe tornadoes are classified as EF5, which is the highest classification.
“Basically, in a tornado damage survey, we look for things like tree damage. What was the extent of the tree’s damage? What kind of trees has been harmed? What direction did they fall? We look for any other indicators of infrastructure damage, such as injuries, fatalities, and the like, “According to Sekhon.
Crews also gather eyewitness and social media reports and data from meteorological radars and satellites to corroborate tornado strength.
Residents who are under tornado watches or warnings, according to Sekhon, should seek shelter.
“Remember, if you can, get inside, preferably in a basement. To try to keep safe until the tornado passes, move to the main floor away from outside walls and windows, “he stated.
Source by CBC
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