A snowfall warning is in place for Metro Vancouver Tuesday (Nov. 29), with the city expected to see around 10 to 15 cm of snow accumulation.
In what The Weather Network is heralding as an "impactful winter storm," southern British Columbia is facing a strong low-pressure system that will bring "significant snowfall" to the region late Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday morning, according to Environment Canada.
While the snow will transition to rain or taper off to a few showers or flurries early Wednesday morning for Metro Vancouver and Abbotsford, the Fraser Valley east of Abbotsford will not likely see an end to the snow until Wednesday evening.
Snowfall accumulations will vary across the Lower Mainland, notes Environment Canada.
The heaviest snowfall is expected in North Vancouver, Coquitlam, and Maple Ridge, with 10 to 20 cm expected, except 25 cm over higher terrain. For the cities of Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Surrey, Langley, and Abbotsford, 10 to 15 cm of snow is expected. For Richmond and Delta, 5 to 10 cm of snow is expected.
On top of the snow, strong wind gusts of 40 to 70 km/h are expected to wallop Metro Vancouver on Wednesday morning, which could make matters worse for moving around the region due if snow-covered tree branches break, resulting in power outages.
The City of Vancouver has launched its coordinated response to the wintry weather, and has already opened warming centres and emergency shelters.
Additionally, the city is prioritizing snow and ice treatment for:
- Major roads and bus routes.
- Bridges and bridge sidewalks.
- Main streets adjacent to major hospitals.
- The four major pedestrian pathways - Arbutus Greenway, Central Valley Greenway, False Creek Seawall, and Coal Harbour Seawall.
- The 16 most-used bike routes.
Vancouver property owners and tenants are responsible for clearing snow and ice from the full width of sidewalks that surround their property by 10 a.m. on the morning following a snowfall and failure to do so may result in a fine.
There is a city-endorsed Snow Angel program that matches volunteers with homes of people with mobility issues who aren't able to shovel their walks.
For those who use public transit, TransLink also reminded riders of its snow response plans Monday. The transit agency has put together a winter travel guide and is calling in extra staff to coordinate service, and will be replacing some buses, de-icing rail lines, and implementing other snow response measures.
Learn more about TransLink and the City of Vancouver's snow preparedness and response plans HERE.
With files from Elana Shepert and Allie Turner