A tree crashed down near the footbridge at Puntledge Park Tuesday morning (Nov.17) following a strong windstorm in the Comox Valley. Photo by Erin Haluschak

With video: Rain, snow, lightning, high winds battle the Comox Valley

A rare meteorological event made its way to the area

It brought with it a bit of everything: rain, snow, lightning, thunder and strong winds.

A large storm system battled the Comox Valley Monday evening through Tuesday, knocking out power to parts of the area and closing businesses due to an unexpected snowfall.

What began as a typical November storm quickly turned into a rare meteorological event Monday evening (Nov.16) as a thundersnow – a winter thunderstorm – hit the Valley.

A thundersnow occurs when lightning and thunder happen, but the main form of precipitation is snow, not rain. They are indeed rare events; according to the Royal Meteorological Society, a thundersnow occurs in only 0.07 per cent of snowstorms in the United States.

The Environment Canada weather station recorded 2.4cm of snowfall at the Comox Aiport, most of which was melted by Tuesday morning as temperatures rose rapidly overnight.

At noon Nov. 17, temperatures were 12C with wind gusts of 57 km/hr.

The weather agency did issue a wind warning for east Vancouver Island from Courtenay to Campbell River and Nanoose Bay to Fanny Bay for strong southeast winds of 70 to 90 km/hr, which are predicted to ease during the early afternoon as the low moves inland and weakens.

Environment Canada is predicting a wet week, at least until Sunday, Nov. 22, with rain and temperatures from 4C to 9C.

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Comox Valley Record