Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Floods top list of Canadian weather stories

  • Print

TORONTO -- Floods were big newsmakers in 2013, and June's record flooding in Calgary and southern Alberta leads Environment Canada's Top 10 weather stories of the year.

Torrential downpours overwhelmed vast areas of southern Alberta, forcing 100,000 people from their homes and causing billions of dollars in damage.

David Phillips, Environment Canada's senior climatologist, called it "the flood of floods" and one of the "most disruptive" storm events in Canadian history.

"The sheer volume and the force of the raging waters inflicted really permanent scars on the province," he said in a news conference Thursday.

Three weeks later, flooding in another part of the county made No. 2 on the list as large parts of downtown Toronto were inundated by more rain in two hours than Toronto usually sees in the entire month of July.

"When you look at the amounts of rain that fell... it was like Toronto was the bull's-eye," Phillips said, who described it as "a direct hit with a drenching rainstorm."

The Insurance Bureau of Canada has said the two events constitute the first and third largest natural insured catastrophes in Canadian history.

Torrential April showers and a sudden snowmelt in Ontario's cottage country that engorged rivers and raised water to historic flood levels not seen in 100 years also made the list at No. 7.

A powerful storm that led to the drowning of five young fishers off Nova Scotia was No. 9.

The mid-February storm "was not the most powerful, not the biggest, but it was the most tragic," Phillips said.

Lack of flooding also made the list, as Environment Canada says it seemed another major Red River Valley flood was inevitable, but cold spring days and very cold nights allowed a slow, gradual melt.

That story placed fourth, just ahead of bumper crops in the West at No. 3, while B.C.'s record-breaking sunshine in July, when not a single drop of rain was recorded in Vancouver and Victoria, was No. 10.

Environment Canada uses "rebound" to describe the stories it placed at No. 5 on the list.

The coldest summer in 15 years in the eastern Arctic helped slow sea ice melting in the Canadian Arctic Ocean to within three per cent of the normal minimum coverage and resulted in the greatest ice extent since 2005. And the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence was more than 13 per cent wetter than normal, which helped restore water levels.

Other stories on the list include wicked winter weather in the East at No. 6, and the prairie winter that went on forever at No. 8.

Environment Canada notes 2013 was another warm year in Canada -- the 17th in a row -- although not as warm as it's been in recent years.

 

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 20, 2013 A13

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

In the Key of Bart: Can’t It Be Nice This Time?

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • May 22, 2012 - 120522  - Westminster United Church photographed Tuesday May 22, 2012 .  John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press
  • A  young goose stuffed with bread from  St Vital park passers-by takes a nap in the shade Thursday near lunch  –see Bryksa’s 30 day goose challenge Day 29-June 28, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What are you most looking forward to this Easter weekend?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google