Last night, storms wreaked havoc in Southern Ontario, with hail and strong thunderstorms.
According to The Weather Network, intense hail storms slammed northwest of Hamilton as thunderstorms swept over the Golden Horseshoe, destroying crops.
During the storm, piles of hail resembled snow, and "the storm got so powerful that the hailstones destroyed tree leaves and even caused agricultural damage," according to the report.
Hail is a type of precipitation that occurs inside thunderstorm updrafts and consists of solid ice. Hail may cause damage to airplanes, houses, and automobiles, as well as cattle and humans. Though the two are sometimes mistaken, it is separate from ice pellets.
Instead, it is made up of hailstones, which are little balls or irregular chunks of ice. Ice pellets fall in cold weather in general, whereas hail development is considerably slowed by cold surface temperatures.
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Hailstones develop when raindrops are transported aloft into icy parts of the sky by thunderstorm updrafts and freeze. Hailstones then develop when liquid water drops collide with the surface of the hailstone and freeze.
Cloudy ice will occur if the water freezes instantly when it hits the hailstone because air bubbles will be trapped in the freshly created ice. The air bubbles can escape, and the resultant ice will be transparent if the water freezes slowly.
When the thunderstorm's updraft can no longer sustain the weight of a hailstone, which might happen if the stone grows large enough or the updraft decreases, hail falls.
If the hailstone experiences varied temperature and liquid water content circumstances in the thunderstorm, it might have clear and hazy ice layers.
In addition, as it moves horizontally across or near an updraft, the hailstone's properties might alter. On the other hand, the layers do not form as a result of the hailstones cycling up and down inside a thunderstorm.
The winds inside a thunderstorm aren't just up and down; horizontal winds might come from a spinning updraft, such as in supercell thunderstorms or horizontal winds in the surrounding environment.
Hailstones do not expand when they are lofted to the very top of a thunderstorm. The air is cold enough (below -40°F) at very high elevations that all liquid water has frozen into ice, and hailstones require liquid water to develop to a significant size.
Hail falls when the weight of the hail exceeds the intensity of the thunderstorm updraft, and gravity pulls it toward the ground. Horizontal winds can push smaller hailstones away from the updraft.
Thus larger hail falls closer to the updraft than smaller hail. Hail can fall at an angle or almost sideways if the winds near the surface are strong enough.
Wind-driven hail may rip the siding off houses, shatter windows and blast inside homes, shatter side windows on automobiles, and injure or kill humans and animals.
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