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'It is often deadly': B.C. meteorologist warns about cold arctic air on the way

Snow may be back on the menu.

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for Metro Vancouver as a cold snap is headed to the region.

"Arctic air will invade B.C. beginning overnight Friday (Jan. 27), with a major shift in temperature from our mild January," states the federal agency.

The statement covers a massive area, from the north coast and Bulkley Valley to the East Kootenays to southern Vancouver Island, as the arctic air sweeps across the province.

Temperatures will drop drastically, dipping as low as 10 degrees below the normal for this time of year; averages for Metro Vancouver in late January sit between highs of 6.6 C and lows of 0.7 C.

Adding to the chill will be the wind.

"Gusty winds will accompany the arrival of the cold air, and the wind chill will make it feel even colder," states Environment Canada.

Current forecasts from the agency show showers tapering off Friday with a high of 6 C and a low of 2 C. Saturday is when the big change happens in Metro Vancouver as arctic outflow winds arrive in the Lower Mainland.

Clear, sunny skies and a high of 6 C are expected earlier in the day, but as the day goes on things will cool off significantly, dropping to -5 C before wind chill is factored in.

Sunday and Monday should be cold and clear as well, with highs of 0 C and lows around -5 C.

That sunny but cold weather will end Monday night, though, as clouds will move in and potentially bring snow flurries.

Tuesday, Jan. 31, things are expected to begin warming, with a high of 2 C, a low of -1 C, and a mix of flurries and showers in Metro Vancouver. However, that's not a certainty.

"Temperatures are expected to gradually rise late next week, in early February," states Environment Canada. "However, there remains significant uncertainty on the timing of a return to seasonal temperatures."