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Five tornadoes reported in Manitoba last week

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Tornado season started in Manitoba with a bang last week.

A total of five tornadoes touched down in Manitoba on June 12, according to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC).

The weather agency explained that the tornadoes happened amid severe weather that developed along a “trough of low pressure oriented in southeastern Saskatchewan and southwestern Manitoba.”

Following this severe weather event, investigators from the Northern Tornadoes Project (NTP) were sent out to determine the location and severity of the tornadoes based on the Enhanced Fujita (EF) Scale.

“The Enhanced Fujita Scale is based on the damage that is caused,” said Dave Sills, executive director of NTP. “When we do a damage survey, we go to the areas that were damaged, and find exactly what happened there, what degree of damage occurred, and use a number of different damage indicators that were part of the scale to rate the tornado.”

The group determined there were two tornadoes in Rivers with an assessment of EF0; one tornado in Glenboro with an assessment of EF1; and two tornadoes in St. Alphonse with EF0 and EF1 assessments.

Sills said the EF1 tornado in St. Alphonse, for example, had an estimated wind speed of 150 km/h.

NTP also determined that a tornado hit Saltcoats, Sask., bringing the total number for the day to six tornadoes. It was rated EF0.

“It’s not that unusual for multiple tornadoes to occur when the ingredients are right over a region,” Sills said.

NTP said these are the first tornadoes in Manitoba this season, which Sills said is a late start compared to other years. 

More information on the tornadoes can be found online. 

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