A day after Manitoba experiences it’s first tornado of 2017 (EF0 in the vicinity of Sapotaweyak Cree Nation, 105 – 137 km/h wind estimate) and a full decade removed from the strongest tornado in Canada’s history, it seems an opportune time to take a look back at June 22nd 2007.
The ’07 Elie tornado came before the adoption of the ‘Enhanced’ version of the Fujita scale and ranks as the only F5 recorded in the country’s database and one of two F5 storms that year (the other was in Kansas as part of a previous May sequence).
It’s peak winds were in the range of 420 to 510 km/h, totally leveling and baring off one of the homes it affected which was one of the main justifications for it’s eventual F5 rating. Thankfully no injuries or fatalities were associated with the event.
The tornado was unusual in many respects, taking something of a rambling and halting path over the roughly half an hour it was in contact with the ground. It also produced it’s strongest damage towards the end of it’s life cycle in what is traditionally thought to be a weakening ‘roping out’ phase. It’s maximum width was in the range of 150 yards but this was prior to it moving into populated areas where it narrowed towards 30-40 yards.
EC initially classified it as an F4 but months later on September 18th it was upgraded due to both careful examination of the damage inflicted and supporting video evidence.
An F3 near Oakville also occurred shortly afterwards less than 20km to the west, along with multiple other F0-F3 tornadoes on the 23rd as part of the overall outbreak.
A few videos of the tornado are available on Youtube.