The Terrace-Kitimat area can expect 20 to 30 cm of snow

Hillary Johnson

It's the first significant snowfall of the year, and Environment Canada is calling for 20 to 30 centimetres of snow with hazardous winter storm conditions for the Terrace-Kitimat area.The snow started falling at 8:30 this morning, with more snowfall expected throughout the day and into the late evening. This weather pattern is driven by a deep low-pressure system off Vancouver Island moving north along the coast.

Wind speeds between 50 and 70 kilometres per hour were also expected. This results in limited visibility due to blowing snow. Environment Canada Meteorologist Doug Lundquist warns drivers to prepare for quickly changing and deteriorating travel conditions.

"It's pretty cold; it's minus 1. It's going to take a lot to melt out 20 or 30 cm of snow. We have another bout of snow, perhaps for Thursday to Friday. It's a really snowy week where we have storm after storm moving on to the coast, and it's going to be snow tapering off to flurries, maybe wet flurries at points, and back to snow again."

Lundquist says it's difficult to predict what kind of winter the Northwest will have this year.

"The farther north we go into the Yukon, it's looking highly likely it will be colder than average north of us in the Yukon, so if some of that drifts down, we might see bouts of cold, but beyond that, it isn't easy to forecast precipitation beyond a week. Twenty years ago, without climate change, I would put my mark into the colder category, but things have been changing in the last twenty to thirty years, so perhaps it's not as easy to predict."

There were also heavy amounts of snow in the Bulkley Valley and Lakes District, which will persist through the evening before tapering off overnight. Surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots may become difficult to navigate due to accumulating snow. 

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