Powerful storm rips through Shuswap, Canada

Powerful storm rips through Shuswap, Canada

A major and unexpected thunderstorm swept through Shuswap in British Columbia, Canada on September 17, 2016. The storm uprooted trees, knocked down power lines, blocked roads and damaged numerous homes. Some of the houses were completely destroyed.

The storm arrived at Kamloops shortly before 18:30 local time and swept through Shuswap less than an hour later. By the time the skies cleared there were downed trees, blocked roads, and homes in the dark. At the peak of the storm about 14 000 customers lost power, GlobalNews reported.

The hardest hit was Magna Bay where residents said it was so dark and windy they had never seen anything like that.

"The wind was so loud that we didn't hear the cottage next door being demolished," one resident said. "When we got back, our trailer was sitting in just a mass of destruction," another resident said.

One camper compared the storm to a tornado.

Video courtesy CFJC Today

B.C. Hydro said late Sunday, September 18, that trees on roads continued to hinder access in the Salmon Arm area. Eagle Bay, where 900 people lost power, and Blind Bay also saw extensive damage.

The storm was reminiscent of a similar late-summer storm that hit the Thompson-Shuswap almost exactly four years ago. At the time, Magna Bay resident Bryan Johnson said it "sounded like an express train," News Kamloops reported.

The pattern was similar, rain and wind swept through Kamloops first and struck Shuswap Lake an hour and a half later, leaving more than 11 000 customers without power.

Saturday's storm lasted about 30 minutes. Winds reportedly gusted to 80 km/h (50 mph).

Featured image: Damage after storm hits Shuswap on September 17, 2016. Credit: CFJC Today


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