South Coast residents who have been taunting their eastern neighbours with photos of daffodils will have to shift gears this week, with more chilly weather on the way.
Environment Canada has issued special weather statements for Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, southern and eastern Vancouver Island along with the Sunshine Coast, Howe Sound and Whistler.
The agency is forecasting several centimetres of snow for some parts of the region on beginning on Thursday night and into Friday, followed by an icy arctic outflow on Friday night and Saturday.
“Most areas will receive at least a few centimetres of accumulation by late Friday. However, there is potential for much higher accumulations over some regions,” reads the statement.
“The most recent weather models suggest the areas favoured for higher accumulations will be East and Inland Vancouver Island, Greater Victoria and the Fraser Valley.”
Global BC meteorologist Kristi Gordon said the exact timing and how much snow will fall remains unclear, but that the region is likely to bear the brunt of the precipitation on Friday.
The City of Vancouver says it is prepared for the snow, with salting and brining crews shifted 24 hours a day, and a new salt contract to ensure stockpiles are sufficient.
With overnight temperatures forecast to plunge to -7 C this week, ice has been visible in the Fraser River, and ponds and lakes in the the area have begun to freeze.
The Vancouver Park Board and the City of Surrey issued warnings Wednesday, asking people to keep off the ice, which remains quite thin and unsafe.
With the plunging temperatures, emergency shelters are also open across the region.
In the City of Vancouver, four emergency shelters have opened, while overnight warming centres have also been activated in three community centres and the Powell Street Getaway.
Advocates for the homeless also continued to hit the streets, handing out warm drinks along with winter clothing and blankets. The Union Gospel Mission has issued a call for donations to help keep the city’s homeless warm.
The prospect of enough snow accumulating to stick on the ground also means residents will be expected to clear their sidewalks.
In Vancouver, sidewalks must be cleared by 10 a.m. the day after a snowfall, or residents could be subject to a $250 fine.
People with mobility problems can call 311 to take advantage of Vancouver’s Snow Angel program, which coordinates volunteers to help clear walkways.
Residents are also asked to keep an eye on their neighbours, and offer help to those who may face challenges shoveling snow.
WATCH: B.C. south coast and southern interior under winter weather alerts