This happened some where between Saskatoon and Regina.

Tornado hits Saskatchewan

No fatalities, but homes badly damaged

Canwest News Service July 4, 2010

Reg Day estimates it only took three minutes from the time he spotted ominous clouds to the time a tornado was on top of him.

"The clouds were swirling," Day said, describing what he, two brothers and a young niece saw from the porch of his farm house just west of Raymore, Sask., on Friday evening.

"It got bigger and bigger, but it didn't look like a funnel," he added. "Maybe we were too close to see whatever was coming. That thing was moving."

Deciding the situation looked "a little too dangerous," the group went into the house.

"We were already too late to get to the basement stairwell," he said. "By the time we got in the house to the picture window and looked out, I saw trees flying through the air."

One brother and the niece were already down the stairs by the time Day and his other brother made it to the top -- just then feeling the force of the storm.

"We ran and then almost got thrown down the stairs," he said. "We didn't really touch many of the steps."

He remembers hearing glass shattering and wood twisting "like an explosion," and the "roaring" noise wasn't over quickly.

"It was deafening, almost," said Day, who estimates he spent about 10 minutes in the basement -- though "it seemed like it was in slow motion."

As soon as it seemed safe, he emerged to see what happened in the farm yard. Neighbours were already there to check on the family, who all were unharmed.

But the damage was beyond severe.

"I couldn't believe it," Day said yesterday, as he surveyed his yard. "It just didn't look real. It looked like a war zone or something."

The house was torn off its foundation. The entire floor was almost completely exposed -- except for a pile of rubble at one end -- with markings where the walls used to be.

Half a dozen other structures in the farm yard were destroyed. An equal number of vehicles were hurled across the yard -- some for hundreds of metres -- in the storm's path.

At least 15 homes were badly damaged, and one flattened completely, on the nearby Kawacatoose First Nation reserve -- the latest area to be hit by the wild weather, including golf-

ball-sized hail and massive flooding, that has wreaked havoc in Saskatchewan in recent days.

Allan Dustyhorn is still shaken by what he saw Friday night as a tornado swept through his home.

"It's a scary feeling," Dustyhorn said. "The main thing is we made it out alive."

He and his family were hiding under the steps at their home when the strong winds picked up the house and tossed it meters away.

"I just turned around and braced myself," Dustyhorn explained. "Next thing you know, we were looking up at the sky."

There were only reports of minor injuries and residents were trying to look after those who lost their homes.

The community, located about 115 kilometres north of Regina, says all of the homes that were damaged are insured, so they will be rebuilt in the near future.

An emergency meeting was held between elders and storm survivors to discuss what to do next.

© Copyright (c) The Victoria Times Colonist

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