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Kingston, Ont., rocked by snowstorm Friday

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Kingston, Ont., rocked by snowstorm Friday
WATCH: Much of southeastern Ontario braced for a major winter storm Friday, which arrived in Kingston around noon and brought with it 100 km/h winds, snow and more – Dec 23, 2022

A long-awaited and massive winter storm rolled into southeastern Ontario Friday.

Harsh winds swept through Kingston, Ont., in the morning as rain turned to snow, kicking off the massive snowstorm and flash freeze set to last through the weekend.

Global News Chief Meteorologist Anthony Farnell said to expect the worst.

“Winds, snow, it’s only going to pick up in intensity as we go through Friday night and then into Christmas Eve day, so tomorrow is not a day to get out on the roads,” he said.

For most people, a storm like this would be enough to keep them inside, but for some it’s a Canadian right of passage.

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“Thunder Bay was 40 below when I grew up so this is not really too bad for me,” said Kingston resident Larry Hogan as he took a stroll through the storm in his yellow raincoat.

The City of Kingston activated its bylaw banning overnight street parking and early Friday businesses including the Humane Society and Public Library closed their doors early.

At Hydro One, preparations have been going on for days to deal with any impacts on the power grid from the looming forecast.

Customer Operations Manager Brooke Fraser, who oversees Kingston and area, said boots were already on the ground by the early afternoon on Friday.

“We have all hands on deck, every available resource is in helping out, we’ve got neighbouring utilities helping out,” she added.

By 3:00 in the afternoon on Friday, there was already a tree down on Clergy and Earl streets that took power lines with it.

However, it’s not all bad news for people living in and around Kingston.

Farnell said that while the worst is yet to come as of Friday, there just may be a bright spot.

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“Wait it out. Today is not the day to do it, tomorrow is going to start getting better, especially by afternoon. I think you’re gonna get a window,” he said

Despite the glimmer of hope, the main message remains: stay inside, stay off the roads, and keep warm until Christmas.

Hogan said he’ll use the free time to catch up with his neighbours.

“Knock on the doors, say hello to the neighbours, how ya doing, come on over for a coffee,” he said.

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