February 13, 2019 6:17 pm

Winter storm hampers travel in New Brunswick

Wed, Feb 13: Most flights in New Brunswick were cancelled and motorists were being advised to stay off the road. As Andrew Cromwell reports, the reality of winter weather in the Maritimes can be especially stressful when time is of the essence.

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Travel around New Brunswick was severely limited on Wednesday as a fierce winter storm slammed the province.

Heavy snow, mixed precipitation and high winds led to a slew of delayed and cancelled flights, along with highway travel advisories.

At the Greater Moncton Roméo LeBlanc International Airport in Dieppe, 16-year-old Annika Newson of Charlottetown and her mother Lucie were waiting to catch a flight to Toronto for an appointment at Sick Kids Hospital.

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“It was like flight after flight, cancelled, cancelled, cancelled, and I was freaking out saying, ‘I don’t know if this doctor is going to re-book or if we’re going to be able to make it on time,” said Newson.

READ MORE: Strong winter storm to bring upwards of 40 cm of snow to New Brunswick

Storms have paralyzed much of the province throughout February, with air travel for the most part ground to a halt. Officials say many airlines have taken up the practice of cancelling flights early, giving people an opportunity to reschedule.

WATCH: Winter storm brings 40cm of snow to parts of N.B.

Road conditions were treacherous with a travel advisory on Highway 1. But that didn’t keep people from venturing out. Alex Vautour said he had to drive his fiancee to work.

“(Road conditions) are bad,” said Vautour. “They’re not good for sure. I probably shouldn’t be on them, but she had to go to work.”

Public transit was also impacted. Bus service was completely cancelled in Saint John and for part of the day in Fredericton.

“Our drivers were just having difficulty seeing the edges of the roads and the backs of the vehicles around them,” explained Meredith Gilbert of Fredericton Transit.

In Saint John, the municipality says road conditions can be further worsened by the switch to mixed precipitation.

“We have some snow packed on the road already,” said Jeff Hussey, the city’s deputy commissioner of transportation and environment services. “It could make for some slicker conditions, so again we ask people to use their best judgement when travelling.”

READ MORE: Winter storm bringing heavy snow, ice pellets and strong winds to Nova Scotia

Back in the Moncton area, the Newsons have their fingers crossed they can get to Sick Kids for Friday.

“I was praying to God the whole time that He would let us get there on time and let us get there and see my doctor so all you can do is be positive about it,” Annika Newson said.

The forecast was calling for a mix of sun and cloud for Thursday.

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