Storm rampages through Interior with more than 10,000 lightning strikes

Numerous lightning strikes hit the North Okanagan and Shuswap as a storm rolled through on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Jim Elliot/Salmon Arm Observer)
Tyson Post enjoys the thunderous spectacle in Salmon Arm on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Tammy-Lynn Post)
Lightning strikes down in the Gleneden area around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Derek Bourget)
Lightning strikes the Gleneden area around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Derek Bourget)
Lightning streaks across the sky above the Salmon Arm Wharf on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Heather Jones)
A bolt of lightning cracks down in South Canoe around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Jenn Hobbs)
A purple hazy sky illuminated by a bolt of lightning in Canoe on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Nancy Peterson)
A bolt of lightning snakes its way across the skies of Salmon Arm on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Tammy-Lynn Post)
Tyson Post enjoys the thunderous spectacle in Salmon Arm on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Tammy-Lynn Post)
Lightning strikes above Mt. Ida in Salmon Arm on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Tammy-Lynn Post)
Lightning strikes down on Mt. Ida in Salmon Arm on Tuesday, Sept. 3. (Photo by Tammy-Lynn Post)

A storm that originated on B.C.’s coast, tore its way through many Interior communities and sent more than 10,000 bolts of lightning streaking to the ground.

The summer storm barrelled across the region during the evening of Tuesday, Sept. 3, with many photos of the lightning strikes taken between 7 and 9 p.m.

Read more: Boat crash one of five weekend calls for Shuswap marine search and rescue

Read more: VIDEO: Man charged after scorpions, spiders and more seized from B.C. home

Bobby Sekhon, a meteorologist with Environment Canada, said the initial lightning strikes in the Southern Interior started when the system moved off the Coast Mountains.

“Basically the case was an upper low moving through from the Coast all the way into the Interior then off into Alberta,” Sekhon said. “Basically it shot off thunderstorms along its path, especially off of the terrain.”

Kamloops experienced wind gusts of up to 70 km/h and there were approximately 1,200 lightning strikes between Kamloops and Salmon Arm. One strike is suspected to be the cause of at least one spot fire near Enderby. Sekhon said there were reports of about 13 millimetres of rainfall in two hours in Sicamous and about six millimetres in Kamloops.

Sekhon suspects these types of high-energy storms will be less frequent as the year goes on.

“During the summer we will see these systems move through and there’s lots of heat and energy and instability but as we get into September things will settle down a bit.”

Read more: More than 2,000 residences without power in Salmon Arm area after storm

Read more: Update: Fire at Kingfisher Creek near Sicamous being held at under a hectare

Despite the ferocity displayed across the skies, summer weather is still on the horizon for the rest of the week.

On Wednesday, Sept. 4, Salmon Arm is expected to reach a high of 26 C, on Thursday 29 C with Friday into the 30 C range. The sunny weather maintains itself through the early part of the weekend but into Saturday night clouds are expected to roll in again.


@CameronJHT
Cameron.thomson@saobserver.net

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