High Winds and Wintery Conditions Make Morning Commute Tricky
It was nice while it lasted.
The mild highs that we experienced on Wednesday are long gone. As of 10 p.m. Wednesday evening the temperature was at 9 degrees, but by 6 a.m. it had dropped to minus 1.
Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement warning that the quick plunge in temperature will be accompanied by strong and gusty westerly winds. Some of those gusts will be up to 85 km/h. A wind warning is in effect for areas near the east end of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario where 100 km/h gusts are expected.
The warning continues to say that winds could be strong enough to cause some tree damage and minor damage to structures, as well as make driving conditions difficult. A high wind warning is in effect for the Burlington Skyway and the Garden City Skyway.
The high winds and blowing snow caused numerous problems on the roadways with drivers ending up in ditches and the guardrails due to icy conditions. Toronto Police was forced to close down the collector lanes of the Gardiner Expressway between Islington and Kipling for about an hour due to icy conditions.
Peel Police reported approximately 25 collisions during the morning rush due to the slick roads and blowing snow. A young child was taken to a local hospital with head injuries in one of those of crashes.
Freezing rain is expected for northern Ontario, but this quick dip in temperature could also cause roads to become icy in areas.
Environment Canada has posted a snowsquall warning for Barrie, Orillia, Midland, Grey-Bruce and Huron-Perth. The squalls are blowing in from Georgian Bay and Lake Huron. Visibility will be down to near zero at times in blowing snow and bursts of heavy snow with accumulations of up to 15 centimetres.
(w files from S. Francis)