Storms bring range of damage to crops across Western Canada

Storms produced hail as large as baseballs across Western Canada resulting in minor damage to early-stage crops and significant damage to mature crops, according to the Canadian Crop Hail Association.

The storms occurred June 8-25.

CCHA member companies are investigating more than 649 claims of crop damage during the time period.

Darryl Tiefenbach, of Additional Municipal Hail, said storms damaged all types of crops in the Saskatchewan communities of Frontier, Climax, Fillmore, Corning, Glen Avon, Kipling, Moosomin, Rocanville, Swift Current, Shamrock, Mossbank, Spring Valley, Avonlea, Balgonie, Assiniboia, White Fox, Nipawin, Carrot River.

He said storms produced hail ranging from pea-size to as large as a baseball.

“We expect to see minimal to moderate damage in the crops at their early stage of development,” Tiefenbach said.

Heavy rain is also a factor in adjusting crop damage.

“The west half of Saskatchewan began drier than normal due to low snowfall and minimal rainfall prior to seeding but many areas have received some rainfall over the last few weeks,” Tiefenbach said. “The east half of Saskatchewan, and into Manitoba, had higher than average amounts of snowfall and above average rainfall prior to and during seeding. Seeding was later in the East half due to the slow melting snowpack and subsequent rainfall.”

Brendan Blight, of Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation, said storms damaged winter wheat, field peas, canola, oats, red spring wheat, soybeans, fall rye, barley and pinto beans in the Manitoba communities of Benito and Swan River.

He said storms produced hail raining from pea to quarter-size.

“We are still assessing the damage but so far it ranges from moderate to severe,” he said.

Yves Dooper, of Agriculture Financial Services Corporation, said storms damaged canola, wheat, potatoes, dry beans, fall rye, durum and barley in the Alberta communities of Carbon, Three Hills, Viking, Mannville, Taber, Stirling, Vauxhall, Strathmore, Irricana, Olds, Innisfail,  Penhold, Stettler, Wetaskiwin and Hay Lakes.

The damage was light to medium.

Scott McQueen, of Palliser Insurance, said storms damaged all types of crops across Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta.

Storms produced hail that ranged from pea to golf ball-size.

“We are seeing a lot of light damage on early-stage crops,” he said. “With seeding a bit behind in most areas, crops are just starting to emerge from the ground resulting in light damage from hail.  We have seen some significant damage in fall rye, winter wheat, and some pea crops.”

Murray Bantle, of Co-operative Hail Insurance Company, said storms damaged various crops in the Manitoba communities of Stockton, Cypress River, Benito, Swan River, Russel, Baldur, Crystal City, Deloraine, Killarney, Oakburn, Russell, Sandy Lake, Strathclair, Gladstone, Minnedosa, Neepawa and Rossburn.

The damage was light to heavy.

Heavy rain and wet field conditions are among factors in adjusting crop damage, he said.

Bantle said storms damaged cereals, pulse and oilseeds in the Saskatchewan communities of Chamberlain, Regina, Eastend, Glenavon, Edam, Cutknife, Frontier, Rocanville Lanbank, Fillmore, Winthorst, Assiniboia, Gull Lake Tompkins, Earl Grey, Carrot River, Choiceland, Nipawin, Abbey, Bulyea, Cabri, Chamberlain, Craven, Cupar, Esterhazy, Govan, Holdfast, Imperial, Kelliher, Lake Lenore, Leross, Outlook, Richmound and Yorkton.

The damage was light to heavy.

Rick Omelchenko, of Ag Direct Hail Insurance, said storms damaged cereals, pulses, and oilseeds in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

In Alberta, the storms hit Barrhead, Camrose, New Norway, Eckville, Sylvan Lake, Penhold, Innisfail, Olds, Beiseker, Three Hills, Morin, Drumheller, Hanna, Rockyford, Delia and Strathmore.

In Saskatchewan, they hit Neilberg, Meota, Biggar, Kenasten, Imperial, Strasbourg, Southey, Regina Beach, Regina, Vibank, Esterhazy, Choiceland, Meath Park, Naicam and Langenburg

In Manitoba, storms hit Binscarth, St. Lazare, Shoal Lake, Minnedosa, Newdale, Plumas and Killarney.

“Ag Direct adjusters are out and have completed all claims up to the June 19 storm date,” Omelchenko said. “Wet conditions and steady rains have slowed adjustments but adjusters are still completing adjustments in a timely manner.”

The Canadian Crop Hail Association (CCHA) has been serving the crop insurance industry since 1915. It is a member-driven organization that represents the interests of the Canadian Crop Hail managing general agencies and insurance companies. These private and government organizations together provide a risk management tool to the farmers across Canada. Members are Additional Municipal Hail Ltd. (Saskatchewan), AG Direct Hail Insurance Ltd, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (Alberta), Canadian Hail Agencies Inc, Co-operative Hail Insurance Company, Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation, Rain and Hail Insurance Service Ltd., New Brunswick Agricultural Insurance Commission and Palliser Insurance Company Ltd.