Manitoba

Severe thunderstorms bring funnel cloud, high winds and heavy rain to southern Manitoba

A funnel cloud and wind gusts topping 104 kilometres per hour were reported near Dauphin on Monday afternoon, Environment Canada says.

Funnel cloud spotted in Dauphin, heavy rain and wind reported in other communities

A funnel cloud was spotted near Dauphin, Man. on Monday afternoon, but Environment Canada says it didn't touch down. (Submitted by Austin Parenteau )

A funnel cloud and wind gusts topping 104 kilometres per hour were reported near Dauphin on Monday afternoon, Environment Canada says.

"It was definitely a serious thunderstorm," meteorologist Dave Carlsen said.

A severe thunderstorm warning was in effect for the rural municipality of Dauphin, including Sifton and Valley River, as well as the rural municipality of Lakeshore, including Ochre River and Makinak.

Dauphin, a city about 250 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg, just north of Riding Mountain National Park, reported a funnel cloud around 3:30 p.m., Carlsen said.

"It didn't come anywhere close to contact with the ground, so it was literally then just a spinning cloud up in the air," he said.

Elsewhere in southern Manitoba, heavy rain and wind caused power outages in several communities, including around Altona, Steinbach and Letellier.

In Altona, where the wind reached close to 90 km/h, police asked drivers to avoid water-logged streets after a downpour in the afternoon.

The storms brought 63.5 millimetres of rain to areas just southwest of Morris, while Steinbach had 61 mm. Morris and Winkler had 55 mm and Altona had 45 mm.

Communities close to the border got all that rain very quickly, Carlsen said.

"They did drop it in about an hour or maybe even less in some cases. That's a pretty short amount of time for the soil to absorb that amount of liquid, so it was pretty remarkable."

Cory Schroeder, who owns a grain farm near Altona, said the storm left a mess in its wake.

A large storage shed used to store farm machinery was torn apart. Pieces of it were found later in several different neighbours' yards, Schroeder said.

"It was calm, it was quiet, and within seconds, I heard this roar. I went out and saw that our shed was missing," he said.

Cory Schroeder's farm shed was destroyed by the intense winds that blew through Altona. (Submitted by Cory Schroeder )

Manitoba is in peak thunderstorm season, Carlsen said.

"People should always be on the lookout and listen for our watches and warnings," he said.

"If warnings are issued for your area, you should probably find sturdy shelter in a house and away from windows."

Grain bins are damaged while splintered wood is scattered around Cory Schroeder's farm. (Submitted by Cory Schroeder)

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