On Friday afternoon, it was reported that a hefty storm was heading towards areas of southern Ontario, bringing with it tornado warnings, heavy rainfall, and winds of up to 100 km per hour! Sure enough, by Friday evening the storm was in full-force across southwestern Ontario, hitting the Essex County town of Amherstburg particularly hard. As the Ontario storm raged on, local residents took to Twitter to share photos of the crazy weather, using the hashtags #ONstorm and #Amherstburg.
According to reports from CBC News, the storm was so bad in some areas of Amherstburg that trees had been pulled down. Further, there was also a number of reports of downed wires, leading to several road closures around the town.
While there have been multiple reports of storm damage in Amherstburg and the surrounding areas, Environment Canada has been unable to confirm whether or not there was a tornado on Friday night, noting that they do not have enough information about the storm yet.
Several local residents took to Twitter shortly after the storm to share pictures of the damage done near them, with one person sharing an image of a local farmer’s barn, which had been completely destroyed by the storm.
The Twitter user explained, “Amherstburg Storm Damage - Homeowner says he was in the shower. He heard the storm then came out to see his barn destroyed. Inside ... a corvette and two tractors. He’s just glad nobody got hurt.”
Another storm watcher posted a similar picture showing the destruction in their area, where a small shed had collapsed and multiple trees had been taken out. The Twitter user wrote, “Definitely lots of damage in Amherstburg, On. Creek Side road.”
Residents in the area also took to social media during the storm, to share some crazy photos and videos of the heavy rain and dazzling lightning show.
One Twitter user shared a video of the extremely strong wind and rain in Kitchener, writing, “Huge thunderstorm hitting Kitchener as of 9:00 pm, torrential downpours, and frequent lightning.”
Another shared a similar video from Hammertown, posting, “The show in the sky is starting!”
Gerald Cheng, a meteorologist for Environment Canada confirmed that they are keeping an eye on social media reports about Ontario’s Friday night storm, and will be continuing to look into whether or not it was a tornado.
Cheng confirmed that social media accounts of the storm would be very helpful, adding, “If you have images or reports of damage, precipitation amounts, or even hail, tweet them!"
*Disclaimer: cover photo used for illustrative purposes only.