Shelburne, ON F1 Tornado of May 15, 1988

Dufferin - Innisfil

This tornado occurred at around 9:00 pm and caused the most damage in the Shelburne area. Several homes were heavily damaged and one was destroyed. In addition, several barns, silos and outbuildings were also damaged and destroyed at a number of area farms that were struck. Total damage was estimated at over $500,000 and one person was left injured.

At the McDermott home which was one of the hardest hit, the house was lifted off of its foundation and left twisted and wrecked, it’s windows shattered, furniture blown around and walls impaled by debris. The owner of that house witnessed ‘a great big grey cloud twisting around’ as it approached, then lay on the floor with his girlfriend as the home was destroyed.

According to Environment and Climate Change Canada (2018), an F1 tornado touched down at 9:00 pm EDT near Shelburne, ON. The tornado travelled for 32 km with a maximum width of 500 metres. The tornado caused no fatalities but injured one person and caused $500 thousand dollars in property damage.


Environment and Climate Change Canada Data. (2018). Canadian National Tornado Database: Verified Events (1980-2009) – Public. Retrieved from: