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Calgary snow route parking ban to be lifted Thursday after more than 1,500 tickets issued

Over 1,500 tickets handed out during Calgary’s first snow route parking ban
WATCH: The city said more than 1,500 hundred tickets were handed out between 10 a.m. Wednesday and noon, Thursday. As Tracy Nagai reports although some Calgarians may not be impressed getting a fine, city officials said they gave people plenty of warning.

The City of Calgary will be lifting its snow route parking ban as priority one and two routes have been cleared around the city.

The Calgary Parking Authority issued more than 1,500 tickets between Wednesday at 10 a.m. and noon on Thursday.

The city originally said the ban would likely be in place for 72 hours but could be lifted sooner. Crews will now move on to priority three roads, which includes playground zones, designated hills, on/off ramps and turning lanes, officials said.

“We want to thank Calgarians who are keeping their vehicles off of snow routes during the parking ban, which is helping snow-clearing crews complete their important work,” parking authority manager of enforcement Joan Hay said Thursday.

READ MORE: 5 things to do if you’re in a car crash

Calgarians woke up to a city covered in a thick blanket of snow as a winter-like weather system blew its way through the region Tuesday morning.

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WATCH: A record snowfall crippled most roads across the city of Calgary on Tuesday. Road crews scrambled to keep up, but as Jill Croteau reports, too much snow came too fast.

Commuter chaos as wintry weather comes early to Calgary
Commuter chaos as wintry weather comes early to Calgary

Environment Canada had issued various special weather statements and warnings for parts of southwestern Alberta on Sunday, however, the snowfall warning for Calgary was lifted on Wednesday at around 4:21 a.m.

According to city officials, some parts of Calgary saw 40 centimetres of snowfall in a 12-hour period. Another five to 10 centimetres were expected through Tuesday evening and overnight.

WATCH: The pandas at the Calgary Zoo got their first taste of winter on Tuesday as they enjoyed the record-breaking snowfall. 

Pandas enjoy first snowfall at Calgary Zoo
Pandas enjoy first snowfall at Calgary Zoo

Calgary police told Global News that over 450 collisions were reported to them from the beginning of the storm Monday night.  Of those collisions, 23 involved injuries.

On Oct. 2 last year, 131 collisions were reported to police.

The City of Calgary tweeted Tuesday afternoon that if drivers were planning their afternoon commutes, to take a look at road conditions before heading out.

“We’ve got as many crews out on the roads as possible to keep up with the snowfall. Be safe out there, Calgary!” officials said.

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The City of Calgary’s Chris McGeachy reminded residents of the importance of clearing sidewalks during snow events.

“In previous years, noncompliance on sidewalk clearing would result in a fee – so basically the cost of a contractor to go out,” he said. “This year, council approved a fine structure to be imposed that starts with a minimum $150 fine and can go up to $750 for non-compliance for not clearing your sidewalks within 24 hours.”

WATCH: Calgary Emergency Operations Chief Tom Sampson says help to clear snow is on the way from friends across Alberta.

Assistance on the way to help Calgary dig out of snow
Assistance on the way to help Calgary dig out of snow

Tara Norton-Merrin with City of Calgary Roads told Global News Radio 770 that progress was slow on Tuesday morning.

“Our plows are basically going over the same main routes over and over and over again with very little progress. We would go down and plow a road and 10 minutes later it would be snow-covered again. That’s what our crews are concentrating on right now: the major roads heading into downtown.”

LISTEN: Tara Norton-Merrin of the City of Calgary joins The Morning News to discuss the city’s plowing efforts

Norton-Merrin added that crews were working as quickly as they could, given the conditions.

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“It’s really been a tough one for our crews and they’re frustrated because they’ve been working all night seeing very little progress,” he said.

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The City of Edmonton sent 30 plows down the QEII to help Calgary with its snow-clearing efforts.

Watch below: After Calgary was hit with intense snowfall on Tuesday, the City of Edmonton was called in to help save the day. Sarah Kraus explains.

City of Edmonton called in to help Calgary cope with major snowstorm
City of Edmonton called in to help Calgary cope with major snowstorm

Randy Loyk with the Alberta Motor Association said the agency was “slowly winning the battle,” but added the wait time for service was around four hours early Tuesday afternoon.

In the Calgary region, the AMA was seeing about four times the call volume it sees on an average day.

Loyk said the afternoon rush would likely put them further behind, but they hope to be back to a normal response time within 12 to 13 hours.

Motorists are asked to slow down and be aware that the roads will likely ice up overnight, making for a slippery commute on Wednesday morning.

WATCH: In Lake Louise and Banff, the snowy blast may signal the start of an early ski season.

Good ski season ahead?
Good ski season ahead?

Calgary International Airport spokesperson Jenna Stothers told Global News there were some delays due to the snow.

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“Our airfield operations specialists have been working around the clock to clear snow from the runways to ensure safe travel, and airline deicing teams are working hard to get aircraft safely on their way,” she said. “However, we are seeing some delays today because of the snow. We’re advising that our guests continue to check the latest flight times on YYC.com or with their airline, and leave some extra time on the roads.”

WATCH: Dozens of flights have been impacted by the snowstorm in Calgary, including arrivals, connections and departures. Nancy Hixt reports.

Frustrated travellers deal with snow-related delays and cancellations at Calgary airport
Frustrated travellers deal with snow-related delays and cancellations at Calgary airport

An Enmax spokesperson said there were no reports of major power outages Tuesday.

“The grid is very stable, the snow hasn’t affected the system,” said Gina Sutherland.

She added that it’s important that any snow-laden tree branches resting on power lines be reported to the utility at 403-514-6100.

Cochrane RCMP advised at around 11:15 a.m. road conditions along on Highway 1 west of Calgary were very poor.

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“The RCMP are asking motorists to avoid travel west of Calgary on Highway 1.  Currently, Highway 1 westbound at approximately 22 is not moving,” a news release said. “There are vehicles scattered all over the highway and in the ditch.”

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WATCH: An October snow storm caused issues for Calgary Transit Tuesday, leading some to question whether busses should be equipped with snow tires. Michael King reports.

Calgary Transit deals with issues during October snow storm
Calgary Transit deals with issues during October snow storm

People on Twitter were quick to share photos of the winter wonderland.

Calgary police warned motorists to drive with caution.

Calgary Transit urged users to bundle up and allow for extra time for travel.

The Calgary Board of Education tweeted at 6:42 a.m. that all schools are open:

Twitter user @Christina_CC shared this snowy view of Calgary International Airport: