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Snowfall warning ended for Calgary after blast of wintry weather

WATCH: A snowstorm swept through Calgary Tuesday morning, causing all kinds of traffic chaos on roads in and around the city. Lisa MacGregor reports.

A snowfall warning was ended for Calgary on Tuesday evening after the region was blasted with wintry weather that started Monday night.

Environment Canada had said snowfall amounts would be “highly variable,” but the city was forecasted to see about 10 centimetres. Officials advised areas at higher elevations could see upwards of 25 centimetres by the time the snow ended on Tuesday evening.

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The weather agency issues snowfall warnings when significant snowfall is expected.

Tuesday’s warning said drivers should prepare for “quickly-changing” and “deteriorating” travel conditions.

“Surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots may become difficult to navigate due to accumulating snow,” Environment Canada stated.

READ MORE: Snow, strong wind and 20-degree temperature drop expected in parts of Alberta by Tuesday

The snowfall is due to a southward moving cold front and Global News meteorologist Tiffany Lizée said snow won’t be the city’s only challenge on Tuesday.

“Strong, brisk northerly winds will gust between 30-50 km/h today, reducing visibility and making it feel much cooler,” Lizée said.

She said skies will clear overnight into Wednesday, with temperatures expected to climb near double digits as into the Thanksgiving long weekend.

Icy sidewalks prompt concerns for Calgarians
Icy sidewalks prompt concerns for Calgarians

The snowfall warning issued by Environment Canada includes a stretch of southwestern Alberta along the B.C. border stretching from Waterton Lakes National Park, Pincher Creek and Crownest Pass to Kananaskis, Canmore, Banff and Jasper.

Calgary snow clearing crews ready for the snowfall

Chris McGeachy with the City of Calgary said crews worked throughout the night, applying salt to the roads to help melt snow and prevent ice from building up.

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The City of Calgary has a snow removal budget of just under $40 million between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31.

READ MORE: The future of snow clearing? Robotic snow-removal machines on display in Calgary

Geachy says they’re still within that budget for 2019, with just under $15 million remaining until the end of the year.

Speaking with Global Calgary on Tuesday morning, McGeachy said although roads are in fairly good condition, they are encouraging Calgarians to drive for winter conditions.

“Our crews are … Working 24/7 and we do expect our plowing operations will intensify through the day as the snow becomes heavier,” McGeachy said.

“The roads seem pretty good but there could be icy spots on bridge decks, on-off ramps and at intersections.”

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McGeachy is urging motorists to leave plenty of time to get to their destination and leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you.

City of Calgary prepares for Oct. 8 snowstorm
City of Calgary prepares for Oct. 8 snowstorm

As part of the city’s seven-day snow and ice control plan, crews start to plow, salt and sand so-called Priority 1 routes (roads with traffic volumes exceeding 20,000 a day) such as Crowchild Trail and Macleod Trail once the snow has stopped falling.

Once Priority 1 routes are completed, crews focus on Priority 2 routes (roads which carry 5,000 to 19,999 vehicles a day) like Kensington Road and Acadia Drive.

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Crews then turn to clearing Priority 3 and 4 routes, which includes residential areas, school and playground zones.

However, if snow falls, the process then begins again at the beginning.

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The City of Calgary said on Tuesday it does not anticipate calling a Snow Route Parking Ban.

Between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Calgary police said 93 crashes were reported including six with injuries.

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