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Thunderstorms rumble into southern Ontario


Heavy rain persists through Wednesday
Heavy rain persists through Wednesday

Andrea Stockton, staff writer

April 26, 2011 — Heavy rain is giving areas in southern Ontario a decent drenching this week. Strong thunderstorms producing wind and hail are possible with this system as well.

Risk of thunderstorms continues on Wednesday
Risk of thunderstorms continues on Wednesday

If April showers bring May flowers, gardeners in southern Ontario are in luck. A soggy system that's drenching the region this week could bring upwards of 60 mm of rain to some places.

“The system pushed into the province Monday afternoon and will stall over the area until Friday,” says Brian Dillon a meteorologist at The Weather Network.

Pop-up thunderstorms rumbled in the Hamilton and Niagara regions Tuesday afternoon and the threat for more storms will continue through the evening and overnight hours.

“Thunderstormas erupted stateside Tuesday afternoon,” notes Dillon. “And as skies clear and temperatures rise in southern Ontario, there's the potential for severe thunderstorms to move across the border and into the London and Windsor area.”

The question is however, how severe will these storms get?

Danya Vettese, another meteorologist at The Weather Network says, the system is bringing in the right ingredients for strong thunderstorms that could produce heavy rain, hail and strong wind. The more sun and warmth involved will help to add fuel to the fire. Vettese adds that the risk for thunderstorms will continue over the next couple of days as another wave of moisture moves in on Wednesday.

“With an abundant amount of rain this week, special weather statements have been issued for parts of southern Ontario. And for areas farther north, a mix of rain and snow has been falling,” says Dillon.

Up to 15 cm of snow is possible for some places in northern Ontario by the time all is said and done.

Rainfall totals in Toronto so far this spring
Rainfall totals in Toronto so far this spring

So far this spring, the province has been dealing with below normal temperatures and above average precipitation.

The city of Toronto for example, has seen over 70 mm of rain this April, compared to the normal 62.4 mm for the entire month.

“And that's without the totals from the recent system this week,” notes Dillon.

The La Niña weather pattern is contributing to the increase in precipitation and cooler temperatures. La Niña meaning the little girl, names the appearance of cooler than normal waters in the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. Simply put, it's called “a cold event.”

Most of the country has experienced a cool and wet spring thanks to La Niña. The trend is expected to dissipate in June.

With files from Matt Casey

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