Extreme Cold Alert and Snowsquall Warning issued for southern Ontario
TORONTO, Feb. 2, 2023 – An extreme cold alert combined with a heavy snowsquall warning has been issued by Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) for all of southern Ontario Thursday evening into Friday. GTA areas closer to Lake Ontario are under a snowsquall watch, while for the rest of southern Ontario it is a snowsquall warning but accumulation numbers have not been mentioned.
ECCC says along with a blast of cold arctic air delivering windchill temperatures of -30 c, we can expect periods of brief but intense snowfall Thursday evening, and visibilities will be rapidly reduced due to the heavy snow combined with blowing snow. The Weather Network suggests the amount of snow will be about 1- 2 cm. North of the GTA ECCC says peak snowfall rates will be 1 – 2 cm per hour
And if that isn’t enough, after a brief reprieve in the daytime hours, we can expect a second blast of cold air Friday night into Saturday morning.
Sudden whiteout conditions in heavy snow and local blowing snow.
Early this evening.
What can Toronto expect with this winter weather warning?
ECCC says “Bands of heavy snow are moving through southern Ontario with the passage of an arctic cold front. Heavy snow combined with westerly winds gusting to 60 km/h could produce near zero visibilities at times. Bitterly cold air will follow in the wake of the front, with very cold wind chill values expected tonight into Friday morning.”
Prepare for quickly changing and deteriorating travel conditions. Visibility may be significantly and suddenly reduced to near zero. If visibility is reduced while driving, slow down, watch for tail lights ahead and be prepared to stop.
Timing of the cold front
In the wake of a strong cold front, wind chills are expected to reach minus 30 tonight into Friday morning. After moderating during the day Friday, wind chills may reach minus 30 again Friday night into early Saturday morning.
What to do when there is an extreme cold alert
With extreme cold, ECCC says risks are greater for young children, older adults, people with chronic illnesses, people working or exercising outdoors, and those without proper shelter.
Cover up. Frostbite can develop within minutes on exposed skin, especially with wind chill.
Check on older family, friends and neighbours.
If it’s too cold for you to stay outside, it’s too cold for your pet to stay outside.
Please continue to monitor alerts and forecasts issued by Environment Canada. To report severe weather, send an email to [email protected] or tweet reports using #ONStorm.
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