Hail, 110 km/h winds, tornadoes possible east of Edmonton Wednesday afternoon

Parts of east-central Alberta could see severe thunderstorm activity late Wednesday afternoon, including the possibility of tornado activity.

The weather is expected to affect a stretch of Alberta from the Nordegg area northeast towards the Cold Lake region. The risk of tornadic storms developing is greatest east of Edmonton to the Saskatchewan border.

“Storms that initiate west and southwest of Edmonton and move into east central Alberta this afternoon and early evening will be of the most concern,” Global Edmonton chief meteorologist Jesse Beyer said.

Moisture in the air combined with daytime heat could create instability in the atmosphere capable of triggering severe summer weather, according to the Prairie and Arctic Storm Prediction Centre and Beyer.

“Atmospheric parameters with upper level support, moisture and lift will lead to the possibility of nearly tennis ball size hail, wind gusts in excess of 100 km/h and tornadoes,” Beyer said.

He added heavy rainfall and lightning are also expected.

Southeast sections of the storm system could see thunderstorms capable of producing two- to three-centimetre size hail and wind gusts up to 100 km/h.

There have been several severe thunderstorm watches and warnings in recent weeks, as well as funnel cloud advisories.

“It’s important to not let them become white noise, and should not be ignored due to frequency,” Beyer cautioned.

“Even though there is always some level of variation, this afternoon could turn into a dangerous situation for some people in east central Alberta. Stay informed and have a severe weather plan,” he said.

Environment Canada said on Monday afternoon that a weak EF0 tornado touched down about 75 kilometres south of Grande Prairie in northwestern Alberta.

One of the best ways to track hazardous conditions is from local viewer reports. If safe to do so, share your weather photos with us via the Global Edmonton Facebook and Twitter accounts.

You can also post updates from your community using the hashtags #yegwx and #abstorm.

Want your weather on the go? Download the Global News Skytracker weather app for iOS and Android. 

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