Windstorms are observed frequently in Québec. These are winds that:
- Blow at 60 km/h or more for at least one hour; and
- Gust at 90 km/h or more.
Cut and gather dead tree branches and cut down dead trees on your lot. Be sure to comply with municipal by-laws.
Find out about weather warnings in effect in your region or in the area where you are planning to travel. Take such warnings into account when you plan your activities.
Prepare yourself when a windstorm is forecast
When the meteorological service forecasts a windstorm:
- Outside your home, fasten anything that can be blown away to prevent hazardous situations and injuries; and
- Postpone all unnecessary travel. If you absolutely have to travel, visit the Québec 511 Info Transports website or call 511 to check road conditions.
Take precautions during extreme windstorms
In the event of extreme windstorms or exceptional meteorological events, such as tornadoes:
- Take refuge in your house, preferably in the basement, or in a solid building that can withstand strong winds, unless the authorities instruct you to evacuate;
- Evacuate in a timely manner your mobile home or any other shelter that the wind could sweep away;
- Stay far away from doors and windows and keep your back to them;
- Do not use the elevator in a building;
- Take refuge in a ditch or other depression in the ground if you cannot shelter in a building, lie face down on the ground if necessary and protect your head with your hands; and
- Avoid taking shelter under a bridge, viaduct or overpass, since winds are more intense there.
Moreover, follow prevention tips and safety rules if windstorms cause power failures, in the event of severe thunderstorms or in case of winter storms.
Do as instructed by authorities
When the situation demands it, the authorities disseminate instructions to seek shelter or to evacuate your home, depending on the hazard. To ensure your safety and that of your family, follow the instructions. Listen to the media in your area to obtain a status report and find out about the procedures to be followed.
Source and reference for further information: Urgence Québec – Windstorms