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'Build in extra travel time': TransLink braces for widespread snowfall in Metro Vancouver

Here's what the region's public transit system is doing ahead of what could be a messy Tuesday evening commute
There is snow in the Metro Vancouver weather forecast for Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, and TransLink says it is preparing its network.

TransLink is preparing for potential snowfall across Metro Vancouver on Tuesday, Feb. 27. 

Environment Canada issued a snowfall warning early Tuesday morning, warning locals that there could be a "significant impact on rush hour traffic in urban areas."

As much as 5 cm of snowfall is expected to accumulate throughout the day. The snow is expected to transition to moderate or heavy rainfall by midnight. 

The transportation authority says it salted its properties Tuesday morning ahead of the wintry weather, including high-traffic areas including transit centres, bus loops, exchanges, and HandyDART locations, spokesperson Thor Diakow told V.I.A. 

Anti-icing trucks were dispatched Monday night to prevent ice build-up on the trolley wires. They will be dispatched again on Tuesday night during the storm. 

"If weather conditions worsen, depending on the route, some 60-foot articulated buses will be switched to standard 40-foot buses – as they are more agile in steep, slippery areas," Diakow added. 

TransLink to monitor evolving Metro Vancouver weather 

TransLink will continue to monitor evolving weather conditions with Environment Canada to prepare for possible impacts to service.

If other measures are needed, the transit agency will utilize other tactics, including the use of four-car configurations on the SkyTrain, deploying SkyTrain attendants on trains, and more.

In January, heavy snowfall slowed traffic to a halt across the Lower Mainland during a potent winter storm. TransLink advised people to stay home unless they had to travel for an essential purpose.

To prepare for winter weather, transit riders are encouraged to "build in extra travel time" and plan commutes using the Trip Planner. Customers can also sign up for Transit Alerts, follow TransLink on X (Twitter) @TransLink, or call Customer Service at 604-953-3333.

Stay up-to-date with hyperlocal forecasts across 50 neighbourhoods in the Lower Mainland with Weatherhood.