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Hail storms pound the Prairies

July 7, 2016 - The Canadian Crop Hail Association has delivered it's first hail report of the season:

Early seeding across most of the Prairies was followed by excellent growing conditions and crop advancement is well ahead of the norm in most areas. Some exceptions exist in areas of Alberta that have experienced excessive or insufficient moisture.

The more advanced the crop, the greater the risk of loss from hail damage. In a year of early crop development, this poses a higher risk to farmers and insurers. To date, business written is up from last year at this time and higher than anticipated for this period. July is expected to be the busiest month of the year for potential hail damage.

New applications will be accepted throughout the month of July. A policy comes into effect at noon of the day following purchase, so farmers are urged to make timely decisions in order to protect their investments. Damage potential increases significantly as crops advance in development.

Alberta
As across most of the Prairies, seeding was very early. Conditions were good in many areas, with some excessive moisture in the Northwest and very dry conditions in west central regions. The first reports of hail damage in the province came in as early as May 18 and there have been many localized storms all across the province, from the far northwest around High Level to the far southeast, around Foremost. Claims are still coming in from storms throughout south and central Alberta during the first weekend of July and will be noted in the next report.

Storm dates and locations of significance for this period included:
June 8: Ponoka
June 9: Sundre through Torrington
June 11: Sunnybrook through Camrose
June 19: Large areas around Abee, Radway and Weskatenau
June 21: Bittern Lake/Holden area, Olds
June 23: Alliance, Forestburg and Killam areas
June 28: Okotoks, High River and Blackie, to Vulcan
June 30: Taber and Ponoka areas
July 1: Mountainview County, Kneehill County and into Starland; Wheatland County

Saskatchewan
Seeding was well ahead of average across most of the province, with slightly slower progress in the northeast. Overall, crops are in good to excellent condition and are at, or ahead of, normal stages of development. Hail agencies are reporting policies written to be slightly ahead of the five-year average. June 29 and July 3 saw the highest number of claims, to date. Adjusters are busy working on claims received in June. Claims from early July storms are still coming in and the full extent of losses is yet to be determined.

Storm dates and locations of significance for this period include:
June 25: Kindersley, Eston, Luseland, Herschel, Foam Lake, Glenavon, Kamsack, Stornoway and Canora
June 28: Beechy, Consul, Young, Watrous, Norquay and Yorkton
June 29: Dinsmore, Elrose, Wilkie, Rosetown, Biggar, Landis, Cutknife, Swift Current, Viceroy, Assiniboia, Weyburn, Redvers, Carlyle and Alida
July 1: Aylesbury, Craik, Hanley, Hawarden, Kenaston and Tessier
July 3: Kindersley, Kerrobert, Eston, Elrose, Plenty, Marengo, Fiske, Wiseton, Dinsmore, Delmas, North Battleford, Outlook, Davidson, McLean, Qu’Appelle, Vibank and Balcarres
July 4: Creelman, East End, Swift Current, Kenaston, Mankota, Aylesbury, Watrous and Neudorf

Manitoba
Weather conditions have been much warmer and drier in many regions than they were last year and crops are well advanced in those areas. Many acres impacted by last year’s excess moisture are recovering, but continuing wet field conditions are still noted across many regions, especially those with higher rainfall this growing season. These conditions have hindered spraying operations, in some cases. On average, crops are advancing well ahead of average across the whole province. Hail started early and has been scattered throughout the province.

Storm dates and locations of significance for this period include:
June 1: Clearwater area
June 16/17: Winkler, Altona, St. Pierre, Carman, Roland, Pilot Mound
June 25: Benito, Bowsman, Brandon, Bruxelles, Carman, Fannystelle, Elgin, Elm Creek, Kenville, Miami, Minitonas, Notre Dame Delourdes, Pilot Mound, Somerset, St. Leon, Swan Lake, Swan River, Treherne
June 29: Bruxelles, Deloraine, Glenboro, Holland, Nesbitt, Notre Dame Delourdes, Pilot Mound, Somerset, Swan Lake, Treherne, Wadcada, Winkler
July 4: Carman, Darlingford, Deloraine, Headingley, Holland, La Riviere, Manitou, Morden, St. Francois Xavier, Somerset, St. Leon, Winkler