Montreal was hit with a blast of winter weather Tuesday morning as snow — at times heavy — began blanketing the city.
By Wednesday evening, Montreal and surrounding areas could see between 15 and 23 centimetres of snow.
The Wilfred Laurier School Board has cancelled transportation to the three schools in its jurisdiction, leading to the following closures:
- Joliette Elementary
- Joliette High School
- Rawdon Elementary
The daycare is open for registered students and all other schools and centres are open.
No other school closures have been reported for the Montreal area.
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This is the first major snowfall of the season and officials say they are ready.
“We are in full action,” said city spokesperson Philippe Sabourin, adding that more than a 1,000 trucks have been deployed to clear the streets of snow and to add salt and sand.
Snow-clearing operations will focus on areas around schools, hospitals and metro stations before moving on to smaller streets.
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Sabourin said the priority is to make sure citizens can move as easily as possible.
“They will need maybe four hours to clear the sidewalks in the main streets,” he said. “For the little streets, we will take maybe eight hours to clean the sidewalks. They will keep working until the end of the precipitation.”
While all efforts are being made to clear streets and sidewalks, Sabourin suggested leaving your vehicle at home if possible.
“Today our best advice would be to take the public transit during the snow tempest,” he said.
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While snow-clearing and snow-removal operations have been problematic in past years, Sabourin said the new administration isn’t planning any major overhauls.
“We have a policy regarding snow removal, so for now the policy won’t change,” he said. “But, we will apply the policy with flexibility, making sure that every borough will be able to adjust the services to answer the needs of each citizen.”
Once snow-removal operations begin, Sabourin expects it will take approximately 36 hours for the snow to be removed from the city’s main streets.