Spring may have arrived, but you wouldn’t know it by looking at a forecast for B.C. highways in the Southern Interior.
Snow warnings were issued for highways including the Coquihalla, Highway 3 from Hope to Princeton, Highway 3 from Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass and parts of Highways 97 and 97C on Monday.
By noon on Tuesday, Rogers Pass could see as much as 20 centimetres, while Kootenay Pass could see up to 15 centimetres, the Coquihalla up to 10 centimtres and the Hope-Princeton area up to five centimetres.
“This is a pretty late spring storm,” said Global BC senior meteorologist Kristi Gordon.
And later storms like this one are “absolutely attributable” to climate change, she added.
Storms are now coming so late that, starting next year, the provincial government has extended winter tire and chain regulations on certain highways from March 31 to April 30.
The provincial government also plans to bring in stricter commercial chain-up restrictions and fines, as well as invest $1.8 million in more weather stations and overhead message signs over the next three years, so that it can provide improved info about real-time weather and road conditions.
Gordon said B.C. should brace for more “outlier” weather such as late spring storms, cool weather or “anything that is extreme or out of the ordinary.”
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