NEWS

Toronto area could see more brutal weather

07/09/2013 05:29 EDT | Updated 09/08/2013 05:12 EDT
Southern Ontario is “ripe for storms today,” but a major weather event could come tomorrow, according to CBC meteorologist Ross Hull.

The humid, unstable air mass that was in place Monday is still in effect today, said Hull, meaning the potential for thunderstorms is still there.

On Wednesday, a fast moving cold front tracking across the U.S. Midwest is poised to bring heavy rain, high winds and hail to southern Ontario with a “bullet of more severe weather” aimed at Thunder Bay.

“Carry an umbrella and and watch those skies closely,” Hull said.

As of 4:35 ET, Environment Canada said thunderstorms and a risk of torrential downpours remain a possibility this evening and overnight for parts southern Ontario, including Toronto.

Why was the storm such a surprise?

A cool breeze flowing off Lake Ontario onto land helped lift and slow the storm as it moved over downtown Toronto, said Hull.

The storm's potency and resulting flash flooding can be blamed on the unusual amount of moisture held in the atmosphere.

“We often see heavy downpours with summer storms,” said Hull, but weeks of humidity combined with that lake breeze meant Toronto was “primed for storms.”

Last night, 126 millimetres of rain fell in Toronto, the most the city has seen in a 24-hour period since Hurricane Hazel in 1954, and more rain than the city normally sees in a month.

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The record breaking storm turned Toronto streets and subway stations into lakes, leaving thousands of residents without power.

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