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Montreal schools announce closures, brace for major winter storm

WATCH ABOVE: For some kids in Montreal, the major snowstorm that dumped over 35 cm of snow on the city was a cause for celebration. Global's Anne Leclair reports.

Several Montreal school boards have announced schools will not be open Wednesday due to the major winter storm that has hit the region.

READ MORE: Winter storm hits Greater Montreal

The English Montreal School Board (EMSB) has confirmed that all schools, adult centres and the central head office will be closed.

​The Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board and Riverside School Board have closed their schools, centres and head offices for the day.

New Frontiers School Board is closed for the day, as is the French Montreal island Commission Scolaire de Montréal (CSDM).

READ MORE: Montreal transit buses, cars, trucks slam into each other in winter weather

The Lester B. Pearson School Board (LBPSB) has sent a message home to parents notifying them that schools and centres will be closed.

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READ MORE: Snowy owl captures hearts in Montreal’s West Island

“Please note that due to the current weather conditions we are experiencing, all schools and all adult and vocational centres of the board are closed to students and staff members,” the message reads.

All daycare services, after-school and evening activities are cancelled, but should resume Thursday.

The Montreal Oral School for the Deaf will also be closed.

And the Eastern Townships School Board (ETSB) announced closures to their schools via Facebook on Wednesday morning.

WATCH BELOW: Winter hits Montreal

The storm that crept up through the eastern seaboard hit Montreal mid-afternoon Tuesday.

About 20 to 40 centimetres of snow is expected to fall.

READ MORE: Montreal police help deliver baby at home during winter storm

Environment Canada recommends postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve, saying visibility could be reduced to near zero at times in the heavy and blowing snow.

READ MORE: Montreal artist builds giant bulldog in snow bank to warm people’s hearts

An estimated 50 cars were involved in a pile-up on Highway 10 at 4 p.m. near Magog, about two hours from Montreal.

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Poor visibility and slippery conditions are being blamed for the accident, closing the highway and sending 11 people to hospital with minor injuries.

Staying safe

Here are a few tips, provided by Public Safety Canada, to safe during the winter storm:

Slow down

Fog, black ice, slush or snow-covered roads can make driving dangerous.

Drive slowly and leave plenty of distance between vehicles.

Windshield fluid

Fill up on winter washer fluid and replace wiper blades that streak.

Make sure there is enough windshield washer fluid in the reservoir and that it is rated up to -40°C.

Carry an extra jug in the vehicle.

Top up on gas

When driving in bad weather, think cautiously, plan ahead and make sure you have enough fuel.

Keep the fuel tank at least half full.

See and be seen

Clear snow from the hood, roof, windows and lights.

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Clear all windows of fog or ice.

If visibility becomes poor, find a place to safely pull off the road as soon as possible.

Get an emergency car kit

Public Safety Canada advises that the basic emergency kit for cars should include the following items:

  • Non-perishable food
  • Plastic water bottles (change every six months)
  • Blanket
  • Extra clothes and shoes
  • First aid kit (including a seatbelt cutter)
  • Small shovel, scraper and snowbrush
  • Candle in a deep can and matches
  • Crank flashlight
  • Whistle (to attract attention)
  • Road maps
  • A copy of your emergency plan

READ MORE: Skier’s eye-catching photo on giant snow bank stuns Montrealers

You can also keep these inside your trunk:

  • Sand, salt or cat litter (non clumping)
  • Antifreeze/windshield washer fluid
  • Tow rope
  • Jumper cables
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Warning light or road flares