'I was shaking and terrified': Possible tornado strikes Lambton County

A possible tornado near the tiny hamlet of Cairo, located between Bothwell and Alvinston, Ont. is being investigated.

Western University's Northern Tornadoes Project is looking into the storm, which packed hail and high winds.

In its wake, trees are down, and property and crops are damaged. Those who live along Johnston Line seemed to be the hardest hit.

Long-term residents Sadie and Mike Sheffield say they have never seen a storm like Wednesday’s.

It is easy to see why they feel fortunate to be unhurt with their home intact.


A blocked entrance way to Sandie and Mike Sheffield’s home on July 8, 2021. (Sean Irvine/CTV London)

A large tree came down, within no more than a few centimetres of their home, blocking their only usable exit.

“The gust of wind came from the corner and went flying through that tree there, that was by the garage, and it went this way. And I was praying God would protect us,” Sadie says.

Just down the road from them, several neighbours took short videos of the damage.

Most show the heavy rain, swirling winds and large pieces of hail falling.

Marty Fraser filmed one of the videos, moments before he grabbed his dog and headed for the basement.

“I thought something was going to happen that was bad, and obviously something did. But yeah, I’ve never been that scared in my life, to be honest with you.”

After the storm was complete, Fraser discovered his destroyed gazebo, downed trees and a vegetable garden pulverized by hail.


A shed is crushed by fallen trees on Shantal Nash’s property in Lambton County on July 8, 2021. (Sean Irvine/CTV London)

Across the road, Shantal Nash and her husband retreated to their windowless kitchen just as the storm hit.

In its aftermath, they found a big mess to clean up. At least five large trees are down. One smashed into a shed. Nash says it’s clear Mother Nature wasn’t horsing around.

“Just wow, that was like my only thought really, like oh my goodness!”

Municipal property crews were busy clearing debris from roads throughout the day, as investigators begin their review of the damage.