A “weak” tornado hit the east end during rush hour Monday evening, Environment Canada has confirmed.
The funnel cloud touched the ground, damaging more than a dozen trees at Pine View Golf Course, near Blair Rd. and Hwy. 174, around 5:30 p.m.
“This thing took down trees that are two to three feet (in) girth, a huge part of a maple tree, and then a significant willow tree, which was two to three feet in diameter and just ripped it down, like, snapped it like it was a twig,” said head golf professional Scott Mikkelsen.
Fifteen minutes earlier, it was “relatively calm and sunny,”
“The wind picked up, the temperature dropped, and then the funnel cloud came rolling through, leaving a path of (damage).”
No one was on the course, which had been cleared for the third time that day due to stormy weather.
The tornado moved diagonally from one corner of the property to the other heading southeast, said Mikkelsen.
“You could see the actual path that it took. The grass was all beaten down.”
Overall, this was “really not a big event in the grand scheme of things,” said meteorologist Peter Kimbell.
Forecasters didn’t see it coming, Kimbell said, noting it wasn’t on par with storms in the U.S. or even the microburst wreaking havoc in Petawawa on July 19.
“It is unusual” for Ottawa, said Kimbell, referring to a similar event near the Canadian Tire on Ogilvie Rd. in 2000.