Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for Ottawa

Ottawa severe thunderstorm watch

Special air quality statement also remains in effect

At 5:36 pm on Tuesday, July 20, 2021 Environment Canada has issued a severe thunderstrom watch for Ottawa north and south this evening.

Environment Canada says: “Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for:

  • Ottawa North – Kanata – Orléans
  • Ottawa South – Richmond – Metcalfe

Conditions are favourable for the development of dangerous thunderstorms that may be capable of producing damaging wind gusts and large hail.”

Canada’s trusted weather source also says wind gusts could reach as high as
90 km/h and there is a potentential for what they call “nickel size hail.”

Ottawa rain Alta Vista
Alta Vista Drive by Marc Olivier Jodoin

The possibility of thunderstorm development continues this evening. Some of these thunderstorms may be accompanied by strong wind gusts and hail.

Environment Canada warns that these very strong wind gusts can damage buildings, down trees and blow large vehicles off the road. Remember, severe thunderstorms can produce tornadoes. Lightning kills and injures Canadians every year. Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors!

Severe thunderstorm watches are issued 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.

And if that wasn’t bad enough Environment Canada also says the special air quality statement is still in effect as a result of pollution from the forest fires raging in northwestern Ontario.

Special air quality statement in effect for:

  • Ottawa North – Kanata – Orléans
  • Ottawa South – Richmond – Metcalfe

Environment Canada says, “High levels of air pollution are possible due to smoke from active forest fires.

“Smoke from active forest fires in Northwestern Ontario has moved into Southern Ontario. High levels of particulate matter and haze were reported at several stations. Visibilities and air quality may be reduced if smoke descends to ground level.”

The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management recommends that Ottawans take cover immediately if threatening weather approaches.

Please continue to monitor alerts and forecasts issued by Environment Canada. To report severe weather, send an email to or tweet reports using #ONStorm.

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