According to Environment and Climate Change Canada, no funnel clouds were report despite a funnel cloud alert being issued on Sunday. The extent of the severe weather was online reports of heavy rain and hail on South Hill. 

However, the alert serves as a reminder of the dangers of severe weather. 

Warning Preparedness Meteorologist with Environment Canada Natalie Hasell said there are two circumstances where funnel clouds could form. 

On Sunday, the Moose Jaw area saw circumstances there “cold core” funnel clouds could form. These are situated in larger low pressure systems, but are not associated with any individual area prone to severe weather. 

The rotating air starts at the surface and gets picked up and emphasized in the convective cells that occur in the area. 

“They might not be severe thunderstorms, they might not even be thunderstorms for the matter, but these conditions are cooler and kind of showery, no single storm being particularly bad, but just enough spin that gets concentrated in the updraft of these little convective cells,” Hasell said. 

She added that the prairies are prone to cold core cells in the spring when larger low-pressure systems sit over the area for a while. 

If these funnel clouds do touch the ground, Hasell said they are technically tornadoes but more landspouts that only last about a minute. 

“It wouldn’t cause a whole lot of damage because if there is a lot of stuff at the surface then there is too much friction for these to even do anything or last very long,” Hasell explained. 

Environment Canada also watches for funnel clouds that are precursors to severe thunderstorms. These are the funnel clouds that we most associate with tornadoes. Hasell said the problem is both funnel clouds look exactly the same to the naked eye. 

With any type of storm, safety precautions should always be taken. Even non-severe thunderstorms are defined by lightning, which can be dangerous. If you see a thunderstorm or know it’s in the forecast, have a plan to access shelter quickly. 

“Thunderstorms can form in as little as 20 minutes. Sometimes, especially if you haven’t checked the forecast, you might be taken by surprise a little bit,” Hasell said. 

While it is instinct to want to watch the storm from a window, Hasell said ideally you should not stand by doors and windows as debris from the storm could break through. 

As for tornado and wind safety, Hasell said to take shelter as low to the ground as possible like a basement or find a small interior room with as many walls between you and the outside as possible like a small closet or washroom. 

If you are driving, there are a few options. Stop and assess the situation and which way the storm is moving. If you can, move 90 degrees away from the track and get out of the way and turn around and go back the way you came. However, these may not be options if you are bound by the roadway. 

If you can’t get out of the way, pull off the road and get into a low-laying ditch keeping in mind that low-laying areas can fill with water quickly with heavy rainfall. Hasell said she’s also heard people recommend getting underneath the vehicle. She said the only negative to that is if the ground starts filling with water it will be harder to move. 

Finally, she recommended that you have a survival kit in your vehicle in case you are stuck in that location for any length of time. 

Coming up this week, Hasell said we could see some rain Monday afternoon that should make its way through this early this evening. We likely wouldn't see any more rain until Wednesday evening and into Thursday. 

You can find your full forecast here.