Alberta’s 23rd tornado touches down near Carbon

A landspout tornado was spotted south of Carbon on Tues. Sept. 10. Winds clocked in between 90 and 130 kilometres per hour but no damage was reported. Image courtesy of John Franks

It was confirmed Tuesday, Sept. 10 that a landspout tornado had touched down south of the Village of Carbon.

Environment Canada issued a small release following the announcement saying that “An area of showers has been affecting portions of Southern Alberta over the past couple of days and on Tues. Sept. 10 produced the 23rd tornado of 2019 in the province.”

The tornado touched down at approximately 2:15 p.m. eight kilometres south of Carbon and only lasted for a couple of minutes.

“It was very short lived,” said Kyle Fougère, Warning Preparedness Meteorologist with the Government of Canada’s Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) division.

“The people that witnessed it watched it cross the road and dissipate,” said Fougère.

No damage was reported as landspout tornadoes are known to be mostly harmless compared to the supercell tornadoes humans normally associate with.

It was reported to have a preliminary rating of EF0 on the Enhanced Fujita scales as implemented by Environment Canada.

This means it is the lowest on the scale and is the weakest type of tornado.

“They can form with any type of thunderstorms or really any type of developing storms in Alberta,” said Fougère. “They form when you have a wind shift at the surface and you have basically air that is already spinning and you have storms develop on top of it that stretches the rotation so it’s not the same as the very strong supercell tornadoes that are particularly more associated with doing a lot of damage.”

Winds were recorded between 90 and 130 kilometres per hour.

“A landspout tornado is very rare to do a significant amount of damage. It can be very weak and short-lived,” he said.

Meteorologists continue to investigate this tornado.

Anyone with images videos or other information surrounding the event is encouraged to email ABSTORM@CANADA.CA or call 1-800-239-0484.


Terri Huxley

ECA Review

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