Environment Canada issues severe thunderstorm watch

Environment Canada has issued a severe thunderstorm watch for the Okanagan Valley today, with 5 to 15 mm of rain possibly falling tonight.

Meterologist Cindy Yu says conditions are even more favourable for a big storm than they were on Tuesday night, when heavy winds did not materialize.

"The conditions are more favourable for thunderstorms. So with that, we are expecting the thunderstorms to develop mainly to the east of us, through the Kootenay region," she said.

"But with the proximity to the Kootenays, we've included the Okanagan in the severe thunderstorm watch."

Yu also says rain will be a factor on and off through next week.

"The trough is really not going anywhere. Friday and Saturday, we don't have a lot of precipitation in the forecast, because we're in between systems. But as you can see, the temperature is really not that much warmer than the seasonal temperatures. In fact, Friday's high is pretty seasonal. Saturday we are a few degrees above," she said.

And she says the upper trough that creates thunderstorming conditions is expected to linger for about a week.

"Sunday, we can see that the next system will approach Southern BC with that 60% chance of showers, potentially a risk of thunderstorms as well," she said.

"The rebuild of this ridge and the sunny weather probably won't come until mid or late next week."

She warns that even though the forecast calls for 5-10 mm of rain, there could be much more than that, depending on the size of the storm.