Tornado watch in effect for several parts of central and southern Quebec
Environment Canada has issued a tornado watch for many areas of central and southern Quebec today.
Stretching from the Eastern Townships to central Quebec — including Trois-Rivières — and as far as Quebec City, Environment Canada says conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms that could produce tornadoes this afternoon. noon.
Tornado warnings have been issued for the following regions: Eastern Townships, Beauce, Drummondville-Bois-Francs, Mauricie, Quebec and Montmagny—L’Islet.
Large hail and heavy rain are also possible in those areas, the weather agency said.
Other regions of the province, including Montreal and the Laurentians, are subject to severe thunderstorm warnings.
More than 545,500 customers were out of power as of 7:40 p.m. ET, Hydro Quebec said, many of them in the Quebec City, Outaouais, Laurentians, Lanaudière and Montérégie regions.
Strong winds uprooted trees and damaged buildings across much of Quebec. In Outaouais, the steeple of the Saint-Fidèle church in Fassett was completely destroyed.
Roads in the Laurentians were seen blocked by downed trees and power lines as evening approached.
A video posted on social media also showed strong winds hitting the Saint-Lin-Laurentides region.
The weather agency says people should be prepared for inclement weather and should seek shelter immediately if severe storms are approaching, especially if their area is under tornado watch.
To stay safe during a tornado, the agency recommends going indoors to the lowest room possible, away from exterior walls and windows, such as a basement or closet. Choose a solid building, leaving mobile homes, caravans and cars behind. As a last resort, it is recommended to lie down in a low place and protect your head from any flying debris.
“This is a dangerous and potentially life-threatening situation,” the weather agency said, adding to watch out for lightning.