RCMP says 14 homes have been damaged and five of those homes have been destroyed after a devastating tornado ripped through Mountain View County in central Alberta.
On Saturday, a tornado one to two kilometers wide swept through the region, the RCMP said. Mountain View County includes the communities of Carstairs, Alta., Didsbury, and Olds.
In an update Saturday night, RCMP said a woman was trapped in her basement when her home was destroyed above her. The Carstairs Fire Department pulled her out of the rubble and she sustained minor injuries. No other injuries have been reported, the RCMP said.
RCMP said 25 cows and 20 chickens were killed, and one horse was euthanized.
Carstairs resident Cheryl Beck told CBC she witnessed property damage about a mile north of that town.
Eyewitness says tornado was a ‘monster’
Storm chaser Aaron Jayjack was in the area when the tornado damaged homes approximately five to six miles southeast of Didsbury.
“It hit some buildings, it barely scraped some buildings. I saw a little bit of damage, a little bit of debris,” he said. “And then when I decided to get a little closer to him like I did, that’s when he really got stronger and hit a couple of houses, damaging them pretty significantly.”
Jayjack said he stopped his chase to check the houses and see if anyone was hurt, but all he could hear was gas “spitting” from the house and he saw that the power lines were down.
“I decided it wasn’t safe for me to go any closer to the house and just then I saw emergency personnel coming down the road towards me. So I decided to let them do their job and continue my main job.” job, which is to track the storm and get back to the tornado,” she said.
CLOCK | Tornado in central Alberta seen from the road:
“It was just a monster, a crazy tornado moving across the prairie here in Alberta.”
Lisa Arrowsmith, a former Canadian Press reporter, was driving south on Highway 2 toward Calgary with her husband Saturday afternoon when she said the sky darkened and they could see a very large funnel cloud to their right.
“The thing that came to my mind is that we have to turn around and drive as fast as we can to the other side, or we have to try to get out of this,” Arrowsmith said, though he said that turning on the divided highway It would have been nearly impossible because of the barriers.
“You make a split-second decision, and we’re like, well, we’d better go ahead and hope for the best.”
She said many people had stopped to take video of the tornado. But she kept the pedal down and after some hail hit the car, they knew they were finally free, she said.
“It was very scary to think that maybe you were going to be caught on the road with nowhere to hide and nowhere to seek shelter,” he said.
Environment and Climate Change Canada had issued a tornado warning at 1:50 p.m. local time, noting that meteorologists were tracking a severe storm in Mountain View County that was producing a tornado near Didsbury that prompted an Emergency Alert. from Alberta. That warning ended about an hour later.