“Watch Out for Slippery Surfaces: A Storm Warning for B.C.’s Southern Interior”
Travelling along B.C.’s Southern Interior this weekend? You might want to take extra precautions as a storm with the potential to bring freezing rain is expected to move through the area. Environment and Climate Change Canada has issued special weather statements for sections of Highways 5 and 3, warning of “local freezing rain and ice pellets” on Saturday night through early Sunday morning.
The Potential Impact
“Warm air aloft with lingering cold air in valleys will create localized patches of ice pellets and freezing rain across the region during the night,” according to the statement. As the warm air retreats Sunday, precipitation will change to light snow, which is expected to end later in the day, as noted by the weather agency.
Danger on the Mountain Passes
The special weather statement is currently in effect for the Coquihalla Highway – also known as Highway 5 – between Hope and Merritt and between Merritt and Kamloops. It’s also in effect for Highway 3 from Hope to Princeton via Allison Pass and from Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass. Additionally, special weather statements calling for freezing rain are in effect for several other regions, including the Boundary, West Kootenay, Kootenay Lake, North and Central Okanagan, Shuswap, Nicola, and Similkameen.
An Upgrade to Wind Warnings
In addition to the special weather statements, wind warnings were upgraded for Greater Victoria and the west coast of Vancouver Island. B.C.’s capital can expect strong westerly winds of 70 kilometres per hour, with gusts as high as 90 km/h Saturday night into Sunday morning. On the west coast, communities such as Tofino, Ucluelet, Port Renfrew, Jordan River, and Sooke can expect sustained winds of 80 km/h and gusts up to 100 km/h, according to Environment Canada.
“Loose objects may be tossed by the wind and cause injury or damage,” the warning reads. “High winds may result in power outages and fallen tree branches.” If you’re planning to travel through these areas, be sure to keep a close eye on the weather and plan accordingly.
As you prepare to embark on your weekend adventures or commutes, make sure to stay informed about the weather conditions in these areas. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so take the necessary steps to ensure your safety and the safety of others around you. Remember to drive carefully, keep an eye out for slippery surfaces, and be cautious of the potential impact of the impending storm. Your safety should always be your top priority.