It may still be fall, but overnight, Regina got its first punch from winter, as snow, ice and sleet turned a typical morning commute into mayhem for many of the city’s drivers.
Police said calls started coming in around 7:00 a.m., with officers responding to 17 collisions throughout the day, two of which resulted in injuries.
With many drivers scrambling to change their winter tires, OK Tire in the city’s south end said it’s currently booking two weeks out for appointments.
“I’ve been doing this over 35 years and the minute it snows, it’s like everyone has to have (winter tires) on,” said owner Jack Dubois.
“We’ve been trying to have our customers prepare, so we’ve been busy for a couple of weeks already, but planning is key for sure.”
For those on the fence, Dubois said winter tires even with no snow, preform better than an all season on dry pavement.
“It all has to do with temperature, but minus seven is the maximum temperature that all seasons should be driven at,” Dubois said.
“It starts to harden up and it actually sits above the rough surface of the asphalt. Whereas a winter tire from plus seven to minus 40, it actually conforms to the little indifferences in the pavement, so you actually get a gripping process.”
Mayor Michael Fougere said with an earlier than normal snowfall, the city is still in the process of switching over its summer equipment as well.
“We will have many more sanders, we did have four as of 4 a.m., so we did anticipate to some degree what was going to happen this morning, but it’s the first snowfall, these things happen,” Fougere said.
With below freezing temperatures expected to linger the rest of the week, it’s a reminder to drivers that this little blast of winter is just getting started.