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Severe thunderstorm causes flooding in Beaverlodge

Flooding seen in Beaverlodge near the Esso gas station on Wednesday afternoon. Photo submitted by Tabitha Moffatt
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UPDATE as of 6 p.m. – Highway 43 is reopened for travel following a diversion while Beaverlodge, Hythe and Wembley Fire Departments worked together with RCMP to clear the flooded area.

UPDATE as of 4:40 p.m. – Motorists will be detoured onto Highway 722 to get around Beaverlodge.  The RCMP is working with the fire department and other agencies to remedy this situation.

An update will be provided when able.  Motorists and general public are advised to avoid this area.

BEAVERLODGE, A.B. – A severe thunderstorm has caused flooding in Beaverlodge this afternoon.

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Environment Canada issued a severe thunderstorm warning for the Grande Prairie – Beaverlodge – Valleyview area earlier this afternoon.

Meteorologists began tracking a cluster of severe thunderstorms capable of producing quarter-sized hail and damaging winds in excess of 90 km/h at around 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon.

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Doppler radar data indicated that this cluster of severe thunderstorms was located in the region around Beaverlodge and was moving toward the east at 40 km/h.

Also at around that time, members of the public reported quarter-sized hail in Beaverlodge.

Shortly after 2:00 p.m, a photo was submitted showing flooding near the Esso gas station in Beaverlodge.

Environment Canada says that 45.5 millimetres of rain had fallen in the community in just two hours.

At 2:20 p.m., Doppler radar showed that the cluster of severe thunderstorms was located near Grande Prairie and was moving toward the east at 30 km/h.

At this time, it’s not known what the extent of the flooding is, or whether any highways have been closed.

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Calls to the Beaverlodge town hall were not answered.

A severe thunderstorm warning remains in effect for the area, while a severe thunderstorm watch for the B.C. Peace is also still in effect.

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