2003-Isabel

† (1 Canadian fatality)

Legend of sources

Tropical Storm Isabel entered Ontario near noon September 19 with winds gusting to 73 km/h (39 knots) and rainfalls of 30-50 mm near and west of the storm track.

After having reached category 5 strength in the Atlantic, Isabel weakened dramatically before landfall in the Carolinas. Following landfall the storm was downgraded to a tropical storm as it entered the CHC Response Zone at midnight September 18-19. Isabel subsequently entered the province of Ontario via Lake Erie near noon that same day. Winds of 55 gusting 73 km/h (30 gusting to 39 knots) were reported in numerous locations in southern Ontario, along with rainfalls of 30–50 mm(1.2–2.0 in) near and west of the storm track. Wave heights in western Lake Ontario reached near 4m (13 ft) because of strong easterly winds ahead of the storm. Damage reports included numerous power outages, fallen trees, and some localized flooding. The CHC issued 22 bulletins.

Rainfall image map of Tropical Storm Isabel, which entered the Canadian Hurricane Centre Response Zone at midnight September 18-19, 2003. Isabel subsequently entered the province of Ontario via Lake Erie near noon that same day, causing minimal damage as it moved throughout Canada. Maximum provincial rainfalls: 59 millimetres in Ontario
Rainfall image map of Tropical Storm Isabel, which entered the Canadian Hurricane Centre Response Zone at midnight September 18-19, 2003. Isabel subsequently entered the province of Ontario via Lake Erie near noon that same day, causing minimal damage as it moved throughout Canada. Maximum provincial rainfalls: 59 millimetres in Ontario

Noteworthy: Isabel was a storm of unprecedented predictability, with “accurate” forecasts being issued as much as a week earlier. With the storm being so newsworthy for such a long time before it arrived, and also due to a September 14 news story warning that conditions were "ripe" for Isabel to be a repeat of Hurricane Hazel (1954), Isabel became the most intense media event in the 15+-year history of the CHC, with the Hurricane Centre conducting more than 200 interviews in a span of five days.

Noteworthy: Isabel became the 3rd tropical cyclone (1st inland) to be flown by Canadian researchers. For more information consult the CHC website: http://ec.gc.ca/ouragans-hurricanes

Tropical Storm Isabel started tracking in the Canadian Hurricane Centre response zone northwest toward Lake Erie and made landfall in southern Ontario with winds of 34 knots. It then turned north through Ontario and dissipated before reaching James Bay. As it tracked through Eastern Canada the storm reached a maximum wind speed of 35 knots, with an mslp of 997 millibar
Tropical Storm Isabel started tracking in the Canadian Hurricane Centre response zone northwest toward Lake Erie and made landfall in southern Ontario with winds of 34 knots. It then turned north through Ontario and dissipated before reaching James Bay. As it tracked through Eastern Canada the storm reached a maximum wind speed of 35 knots, with an mslp of 997 millibar

Ontario

September 20, 2003

  • A woman passenger was killed on County Road 4 when a truck lost control north of Odessa due to wet road conditions (KWS)
  • Point Pelee – more than 53 mm (2.1 in) of rain fell (KWS)
  • Toronto – close to 30 mm (1.4 in) of rain fell (TS)
  • Winds gusted to more than 50 km/h (27 knots) in Kingston (KWS)
  • 70 km/h (38 knots) winds gusted east of the storm centre (HDS)
  • Hydro One reported 27,000 households lost power due to tree limbs falling on power lines, with 12,000 in the Toronto area (HDS)
  • Schools were shut down in the Halton district (HDS)
  • Waves built to 4 m (13ft) on Lake Ontario (CHC)

Quebec

September 20, 2003

  • No damage or effects from the storm were reported and the storm was severely downgraded to a low pressure system by the time it arrived (MG)