Pine Lake Tornado - 20 Years Later
Photo credit: GOES-10 Visible Satellite Imagery
July 14th, 2000 is a day that residents of the quiet town of Pine Lake, Alberta will never forget.
After a severe thunderstorm watch and subsequent severe thunderstorm warning was issued in the late afternoon/early evening hours for the Red Deer/Pine Lake area, a supercell thunderstorm spawned a tornado at around 7 p.m. MDT, that tore through the Green Acres Campground on the west shore of Pine Lake. Twelve people tragically lost their lives that evening, with over one hundred more injuries.
This tornado had peak winds of 300 km/h, and was rated an F-3 on the fujita scale (this was before the enhanced fujita scale was implemented).
At the time, the Pine Lake tornado was the deadliest Canadian tornado since the "Black Friday" F-4 tornado on July 31, 1987 in Edmonton, Alberta.