'Like Bombs': Baseball-Sized Hail Stones Shatter Car Windscreens in Canada

Drivers in Alberta, Canada, were left stunned as their cars were suddenly battered and damaged by baseball-sized hail stones.

The hail storm happened in Innisfail, Alberta, on Monday at just after 6 p.m. local time, according to reports.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) said that the storm, which lasted 10 to 15 minutes, damaged 34 vehicles, according to a CBC report.

As well as the damaged vehicles, a number of people suffered minor injuries, and three collisions were reported as a result of the storm.

Motorist Matt Berry, who got caught in the storm, took to Twitter to share images of his car. His front and back windshields were damaged and his car was dented.

"Got stuck in the huge hail storm at the bottom of Antler Hill between Redder and Innisfail," Berry tweeted.

"Thankfully it's just the vehicle that got damaged. Crazy stuff to experience though."

Following the incident, Berry also spoke to local media and explained his fears during the storm.

"I've never been in a war, I don't pretend to know what a war sounds like, but inside the car, it sounded like bombs were hitting the top of my car," he told CTV News Edmonton.

"And as my windshield started concaving and smashing, I kind of just ducked and covered."

The size of the hailstones has caused concern. Julian Brimelow, the executive director of Western University's Northern Hail project, a five-year study based in Alberta, suggested they may have broken records.

"We were all a bit shocked to be honest, I'm pretty sure we're probably going to set a new record in terms of mass," he said, according to CBC.

"We were getting reports of grapefruit-sized hail, softball-sized hail. Usually in an exceptional day, we maybe have tennis ball-sized hail, so six to seven centimetres. But [on Monday], we had a lot of stones that were over 10 centimetres across.

The NHP Field Project Twitter page also tweeted some of the hail stones that had been collected.

"Recap of yesterday's mission across #ABwx for the westernuNHP," the tweet said while also showing a bag of hail stones in a plastic bag.

"Documented a long-track supercell. Collected 7 bags of baseball to grapefruit-sized hail.

"Deployed 4 probes ahead of hailcores (2 with video) and all successfully hit.

"Measured and bagged a 106mm hailstone."

Experts have warned against more intense hail storms in the future due to climate change.

The February 2021 research paper, entitled The effects of climate change on hailstorms says that the size of hail storms is expected to change due to an increase in temperature in certain climates.

"As a result of anthropogenic warming, it is generally anticipated that low-level moisture and convective instability will increase, raising hailstorm likelihood and enabling the formation of larger hailstones," an extract from the paper read.

"Observations and modelling lead to the general expectation that hailstorm frequency will increase in Australia and Europe, but decrease in East Asia and North America, while hail severity will increase in most regions."

Hail storm
A file photo of a car's back windshield destroyed by hail. Multiple vehicles have been damaged following an intense hail storm on Monday in Innisfail, Canada. Getty