06/26/2012 12:32 EDT | Updated 08/25/2012 05:12 EDT

Saskatchewan Tornadoes: Storm Chasers Flock To Prairies Hoping To See Twisters

Flickr: Space Ritual

REGINA - A storm chaser says he and others from the southern United States are going to be watching the skies in southern Saskatchewan.

Greg Johnson says on his blog that -- quote -- "Tuesday is looking scary in Saskatchewan."

He says forecast models show that severe weather is imminent and the risks include large hail, damaging winds, and strong tornadoes.

Johnson says he will be in an area north and slightly east of Moose Jaw Tuesday looking for tornadoes and storms, adding the potential is so great that fellow storm chasers from the southern United States are converging on the Regina area with the expectation they'll see some activity.

John Paul Cragg is Environment Canada's severe weather specialist for Saskatchewan and he says it's impossible to predict with any accuracy what will happen 24 hours before.

Cragg says tornado warnings are generally issued between 10 and 20 minutes ahead of a possible formation, and those alerts are the only ones people should focus on.

"We're the only official body that should be putting out warnings or watches," said Cragg.

He says Environment Canada issues its storm watches three to six hours before an event, to ensure it can predict the location and severity as accurately as possible.

Still, Cragg says a general warning that storms could be on the way is OK. He says it's good for people to ensure they have a plan in place for what to do if severe weather strikes.


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