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'Travel disruptions': Winter storm to bring up to 35 cm of snow to Metro Vancouver

Travellers should prepare for challenging travel conditions
Environment Canada's Metro Vancouver weather forecast includes a winter storm that may bring up to 30 cm of snowfall to the region starting Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023.

Environment Canada calls for up to 35 cm of snowfall in parts of Metro Vancouver over the weekend. 

On Friday (Feb. 24), the national weather forecaster issued a special weather statement for the region, stating that a "significant weather system" will push across the South Coast, bringing heavy snow.

Widespread snowfall with amounts ranging between 15 cm to 35 cm is expected on Saturday night in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Howe Sound, Sunshine Coast, Whistler, and the Sea to Sky highway from Squamish to Whistler.

Environment Canada expects periods of light snow to start falling on Saturday during the day and "intensify to heavy snow" at night. The heavy snow is expected to ease early Sunday morning for most regions.

There is some uncertainty about the exact snowfall amounts "due to the variability in the track of the low-pressure system and the strength of the Arctic outflow winds." However, the current guidance suggests accumulations of 15 to 25 cm of snow with up to 35 cm possible over upslope regions and higher terrain.

Warnings will be issued as the winter storm draws closer. Travellers should prepare for challenging travel conditions from Saturday night to Sunday.

Metro Vancouver weather forecast and upcoming winter storm

While the cold weather will ease up heading into the weekend, a "warmer trend" is expected to begin by Sunday afternoon. That said, unsettled conditions and overnight lows falling below seasonal averages mean that there is the possibility for flurries a couple of times next week. 

The City of Vancouver says it has been putting salt or brine on all of the major roads, bridges, viaducts, bus routes, roads adjacent to hospitals, schools, care facilities, pedestrian pathways, and the 16 most-used bike routes ahead of the winter storm.

Drivers should also try to provide extra time and travel with caution if they are out on the roads. If they do see city vehicles plowing and salting the roads, they should try and get out of their way and give them lots of space.

Find out more about the city's snow plan and advice for locals.