Welcome winter: what you need to know about London's first whiteout

13 Dec 2017 9:42 AM | Smart About Salt (Administrator)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/winter-london-storm-1.4444158

Londoners could be seen trekking through blowing snow on Tuesday evening, as Canada's weather agency issued a snow squall warning. 

Environment Canada issued the warning that will likely produce squalls off Lake Huron producing snowfall amounts of 30 cm or more. The lake effect snow squalls are likely to persist into Wednesday.

"We're going to be watching the wind. We're expecting it to pickup from the Northwest, gusting up to 70 km/hr," Environment Canada's metrologist Geoff Coulson said. 

The weather agency has advised people to consider postponing travel plans until road conditions improve, as travel is expected to be hazardous due to reduced visibility.  

London's forecast is seeing snow every week day — so here's what you need to know so far.

London International Airport is reporting flight cancellations for the first time this winter season.

Up to a dozen departing and arriving flights to-and-from Toronto have been cancelled Tuesday afternoon and evening.

Gerry Vanderhoek, manager of commercial services and passenger experience, says Londoners should check schedules before heading to the airport. 

"The biggest thing when you're in these conditions is the ice on the wings. They get in to a really long de-icing delay which could be several hours," he said.

Vanderhoek said flight cancellations should only last as long as the weather. 

"This should only be short-lived," he said. "Our runway conditions are wide open and our people are keeping everything smoothly."

City crews will continue to salt streets on Wednesday. They're warning drivers not to park on the street until further notice. 

City crews went out on Tuesday with more than 31 plows and 27 salt trucks on the roads clearing main streets and bus routes.

"If the snow persists and it's a prolonged snow event we do need to go back on those main streets again and re-plow them," said London's manager of roadside operations Don Purchase. 

The prospect of reduced visibility and slippery roads forced some school bus lines to cancel services. School buses in London continued to run. Cancellations in the counties on Tuesday included: 

  • Oxford
  • Elgin,
  • Middlesex

There were some reports of collisions Tuesday morning, including a jack-knifed trailer on the 401, near Tilbury that closed westbound lanes for several hours. A propane tanker also blocked lanes on the 402 at Colonel Talbot Road.  

"Even if you have snow tires doesn't mean you're going to be staying out of the ditch. You still have to drive cautiously," said OPP constable Sean Kivvel. 

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