Thunderstorms, high winds and heavy rain can develop quickly and threaten life and property. Environment Canada has issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Southern Niagara.
When there is a wind warning expect winds to be blowing steadily at 60-65 km/h or more, or winds that are gusting up to 90 km/h or more. Walking with balance against the wind becomes difficult with winds between 60 and 70 km/h and there could be flying hazardous debris.
Listen for storm surge warnings, which can occur around the Great Lakes. The Meteorological Service of Canada will issue warnings. Getting caught near the shoreline during a storm surge could be life-threatening due to high surf, high water levels and shoreline flooding.
Stay indoors until it is safe.
Preparing for severe storms:
- Stock up on; heating fuel, ready-to-eat food, extra batteries, battery powered or wind-up flashlights and radio.
- Secure items that may blow away or tear loose and cause injury and damage property.
- Park your car in the garage if possible.
- Trim dead branches and cut down dead trees so they don’t fall on your home.
- While indoors stay away from windows, doors, skylights and fireplaces.
- During a severe storm use your cell phone but it is not safe to use your land-line telephone.
- Stay away from shorelines and NEVER go out in a boat during a storm. If you are on the water and you see bad weather approaching, head for shore immediately.
- If heavy rain is in the forecast ensure your eves troughs discharge away from your house foundation and onto the lawn.
- Never drive through flood waters.
- Plan to stay off the roads during a severe storm. If you must travel do so during the day and let someone know your route and arrival time. Prepare an emergency car kit in the event you get stuck. Kit items; food that won’t spoil, water, blanket, extra clothing, shoes or boots, first aid kit with seatbelt cutter, small shovel, scraper or snowbrush, candle in a deep can and matches, flashlight, whistle to attract attention, maps and copy of your emergency plan. Trunk items; sand, salt or cat litter (non-clumping), antifreeze, windshield fluid, tow rope, jumper cables, fire extinguisher, warning light or road flares.