High winds blow through Calgary

Calgary saw strong winds again on Wednesday with gusts of up to 100 kilometres per hour at higher elevations, according to the Calgary fire department.
A city transit official photographs broken window glass and parts of an office tower blown off by high winds in Calgary on Nov. 27. (Larry MacDougal/CP)

Strong winds hit Calgary again Wednesday with gusts of up to 100 kilometres per hour at higher elevations, according to the Calgary fire department.

Due to the continuing high winds and the dangers posed, the city activated its Municipal Emergency Plan just before 4 p.m. Wednesday afternoon and opened the Emergency Operations Centre.

Do you have pictures or video of the wind plaguing Calgary today?

Please send them to calgarynewstips@cbc.ca.

Police closed Highway 22X between Cranston Boulevard and Deerfoot Trail S.E. due to unsafe conditions from blowing construction material. The highway has since been reopened.

Ninth Avenue near First Street S.W. was shut down because of debris fallling off a downtown building, but has now reopened.

Third Street southwest between Sixth Avenue and Seventh Avenue remains closed so crews can help fix an unsecured sign on the BMO Centre.

A large tarp blew off a building near the airport, striking a man in the head. While injured, he is conscious and breathing.

Conditions may change rapidly and Calgarians are reminded to be prepared for potential hazards caused by strong winds throughout the afternoon and evening.

Environment Canada has issued a wind warning for southern Alberta.

"The strongest winds will be close to the Foothills, and maybe further down south to the Lethbridge region," said Environment Canada meteorologist Peter Spyker, adding that Airdrie, Brooks and Lethbridge can also expect high winds.

The wind was expected to pick up during the afternoon, when temperatures should be in the double digits, said Spyker.

"What we expect to happen is sun comes out, things continue to warm, those winds will be allowed to mix down to the surface, so we will see some gustiness as the day goes on."

The City of Calgary warned residents to secure any loose items in their yards or balconies.

Natural gas or propane fuel for barbecues should also be turned off to avoid gas leaks in case your barbecue become detached. To report damage, residents should call 311.

Spyker attributed the warm temperatures to a La Niña weather pattern this year — and the warm air is bringing the strong winds.

"At some point I think the other shoe is going to fall and we'll get into the other extreme that brings us the averages."

Those averages are between ­­–6C and –18C for this time of year.

The meteorologist said the Prairies and parts of Northern Canada have been the most difficult places to do forecasts for this year.

"So far in December we issued 63 wind warnings for the area we cover, whereas last year we issued seven for the same time, so it has been an odd year."