Eckville and Sylvan Lake areas under thunderstorm watch

Environment Canada placed the region under the watch just before noon on Friday

Much of Central Alberta is under a thunderstorm watch, including Sylvan Lake and Eckville.

Environment Canada issued the watch just before noon on Friday, saying conditions are favourable for “dangerous thunderstorms” to form.

The weather advisory warns residents the storms are capable of producing damaging wind gusts, damaging hail and heavy rain.

Severe thunderstorm watches are issued by Environment Canada when atmospheric conditions are favourable for the development of thunderstorms that could produce one or more of the following: large hail, damaging winds, torrential rainfall.

The storm watch is a result of a cold front moving through the province later this afternoon, according to a press release from Environment Canada.

“Thunderstorms will initiate between Edmonton and Rocky Mountain House and move to the east and southeast into the evening,” the release states.

Environment and Climate Change Canada meteorologists are warning conditions in Central Alberta are likely to develop supercells, some of which could have the potential to become tornadic.

Along with the potential for tornados, Environment Canada is also warning the public about the dangers of hail, which could also occur during a sever thunderstorm.

“Very large hail can damage property, break windows, dent vehicles and cause serious injury.”

Residents are also reminded of the dangers of strong winds. According to Environment Canada, strong wind gusts can damage buildings, down trees and blow large vehicles off the road.

When potentially dangerous weather approaches Central Albertans are strongly urged to seek shelter indoors, as lightning kills and injures Canadians every year.

“Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors!”

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