Major winter storm could bring up to 30cm of snow to Montreal area
Published Monday, February 29, 2016 5:50PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, March 1, 2016 1:26PM EST
A major storm system is heading for southern Quebec and is expected to start Tuesday night, a day after freezing rain caused slippery streets and sidewalks for Montrealers.
Environment Canada has issued winter storm and blizzard warnings for much of the southern part of the province.
The Montreal area as well as the Lanaudiere area, St. Jerome-Lachute areas and Quebec City are under blizzard warnings, issued when widespread reduced visibilities of 400 metres or less are expected for at least four hours.
The first day of March will bring with it snow, moving in beginning around 7 or 8 p.m. Tuesday. The Montreal area could see as much as 20 centimetres of snow through to Wednesday morning, with traffic chaos predicted for morning rush hour.
The snow is expected to taper off Wednesday afternoon, for a total of 20 to 30 centimetres, which would make it the largest snowfall so far of 2016. The Dec. 29 snowstorm brought with it 40 centimetres of snow, the largest of the winter season.
This is an all-snow weather event, meaning there will be no mixed precipitation, but In areas along the U.S. border there could be some freezing rain.
The winter storm warning stretches from the Quebec/Ontario border through Montreal and Quebec City into Charlevoix, reaching the Eastern Townships and up to the Laurentians.
The 10 centimetres of freezing rain that fell overnight into Monday morning led to plenty of 911 calls, mostly for falls.
Urgences Sante said they received 100 times more calls than usual on Monday.
The biggest trouble areas tend to be sidewalks, stairs, and driveways. While there were nearly 1000 workers out on the roads Monday spreading salt, it was not enough to prevent these accidents.
The MUHC sees far more ER visits after freezing rain than snowstorms, explained Dr. Frederic Dankoff, the MUHC medical coordinator, who has some advice on when to go to the ER.
“If you look at your wrist and ankle and not only does it not hurt, but it's deformed, you should definitely visit an ER. If the limb or fractured area is starting to feel cold or you feel numb, you should go immediately. Those are some of the more dangerous situations. If you bumped your head and you are getting a headache and starting to vomit, you definitely need to go to an ER,” he said.
A Montrealer walks down a path in a Montreal park under snow covered trees following a snowfall Thursday, February 28, 2013 in Montreal. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)