Edmonton area receives big blast of winter weather

Click to play video: 'Phase 1 parking ban coming to Edmonton after blast of winter weather'
Phase 1 parking ban coming to Edmonton after blast of winter weather
A low-pressure system dumped a foot of snow on Edmonton, which has prompted the city to enact a citywide Phase 1 parking ban Monday – Feb 26, 2024

A recent stretch of warm weather in the Edmonton area ended Sunday as cold weather crept in and the region saw a significant amount of snow fall to the ground.

A snowfall warning was issued for the Edmonton area over the weekend but it had been lifted as of early Monday afternoon as the Alberta clipper system moved east.

“The largest winter storm of the season brought significant snowfall to a large portion of central Alberta overnight,” Environment and Climate Change Canada said in a weather summary Monday, adding strong winds led to large snow drifts and would make snowfall measurements challenging.

The heaviest swath of snow fell along the Yellowhead corridor through the city of Edmonton, the national weather agency said.

ECCC snowfall reports as of 12 p.m. local time, in centimetres, were:

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  • St. Albert: 30 cm
  • Edmonton Castle Downs: 23 cm
  • Stony Plain: 21 cm
  • Sherwood Park: 20 cm
  • Elk Island National Park: 18 cm
  • Camrose: 17 cm
  • Edmonton Int’l Airport: 15 cm
  • Edson: 15 cm
  • Beaverlodge: 12 cm
  • Pekisko: 12 cm
  • Whitecourt: 11 cm
  • Nordegg: 8 cm
  • Rocky Mountain House: 6 cm

While the bulk of the snowfall has passed, the weather agency said there would be an additional two to four centimetres on Monday.

“Wind gusts up to 60 km/h, particularly east of Edmonton towards the Saskatchewan border, are causing periods of localized blowing and drifting snow.”

Weather agencies define an Alberta clipper as a fast-moving, low-pressure winter system that originates in the province and moves southeast across North America.

“This low-pressure area is usually accompanied by light snow, strong winds and colder temperatures,” said the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Click to play video: 'Alberta’s capital walloped by snow on Sunday night'
Alberta’s capital walloped by snow on Sunday night


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ECCC said conditions were expected to improve throughout the day but warned the snow could make driving problematic in some areas.

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“Prepare for quickly changing and deteriorating travel conditions. If visibility is reduced while driving, turn on your lights and maintain a safe following distance,” the weather agency said.

Brandon Klassen, a spokesperson for the Alberta Motor Association, said the organization had been fielding calls on Monday from drivers “hitting curbs, bending tires, or they can’t even get out of their driveway.”

“(Or) they get out onto the road and they just spin out and get stuck,” he said.

“We run into issues with our tow operators as well. It’s taking them longer to get to calls because of the road conditions.”

Klassen said the AMA is constantly around double the volume for tows and winches, but battery services are below normal for this time of year. Currently, for tows and winches, Edmonton has the highest demand in the province right now.

Klassen added that the AMA is asking Edmontonians to slow down and be very careful when passing tow truck operators so that everyone can get home safely at the end of the day.

The City of Edmonton is enacting a Phase 1 citywide parking ban for major roads, beginning at 7 p.m. Monday.

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A city bus is seen in the area of 127th Street and 127th Avenue in Edmonton on Monday morning. The bus was struggling to move after a heavy snowfall and a tow truck was called to the area. Global News

The City of Edmonton also activated its extreme cold weather protocols at noon on Sunday.

The protocols are aimed at protecting those experiencing homelessness in Edmonton from the cold.

The city said it has a target date of Friday for lifting its extreme cold weather response protocols.

“If weather conditions remain cold beyond this time frame, the response will be extended,” city officials said.

“The threshold for activating the city’s extreme weather response is a temperature of -20 C with wind chill for at least three consecutive nights.”

Click to play video: 'Edmontonians wake up to cold and snowy Monday'
Edmontonians wake up to cold and snowy Monday

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