IN PHOTOS: Winter storm blasts much of Canada as Christmas approaches

Click to play video: 'Extreme weather creates challenges across Canada'
Extreme weather creates challenges across Canada
WATCH: Extreme weather has led to a challenging Christmas Eve for many Canadians. Neetu Garcha reports. – Dec 24, 2022

A severe winter storm has left much of Canada battered on Christmas weekend with weather warnings in place across the country.

Flights have been cancelled at major airports in Ontario, Quebec and B.C., and sections of provincial highways have been closed off due to hazardous driving conditions, impacting holiday travel plans for many Canadians.

Environment Canada has urged people to check the local forecast and exercise extreme caution when driving or walking on icy surfaces.

Click to play video: 'Brutal winter storm leaves many Americans in the cold and dark'
Brutal winter storm leaves many Americans in the cold and dark

Read more: Environment Canada warns of once-in-decade storm as Ontario, Quebec see snow, winds

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Here’s a look at how Canada’s provinces are faring in the storm.


Weather warnings issued by Environment Canada remained in effect for much of Ontario on Saturday, including Toronto and Ottawa.

As of Saturday noon, over 75,000 Hydro One customers were affected by power outages in Ontario as workers continued their efforts to restore power.

A streetcar driver works to clear ice from a track switch during a snowstorm in Toronto on Friday, December 23, 2022. A winter storm warning is in place for most of southern Ontario. Arlyn McAdorey/ The Canadian Press

A winter weather travel advisory also remains in place for the City of Toronto. Environment Canada issued the advisory early Saturday morning, saying strong wind gusts between 70 and 80 km/h are possible.

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A Significant Weather Event, declared by the city of Ottawa on Thursday, remains in place as well.

A person makes their way through the Sandy Hill neighbourhood of Ottawa, on Friday, Dec. 23, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Spencer Colby
Some northern and southern Ontario cities have been experiencing blizzards, causing several Via Rail trains to be delayed or cancelled.

In a statement emailed to Global News on Saturday, Via Rail said several of its trains in the Quebec City to Windsor corridor had been immobilized “due to extreme weather conditions,” which includes train numbers 55, 59, 69, 669, 79, 48, 54, 68 and 668.

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Ontario Provincial Police say the first traffic fatality since the start of the storm has been reported in the province, and officers are investigating whether or not extreme weather conditions played a part.

There are smaller road closures and detours all across the province, and some municipalities are instituting states of emergency.


Storm surge warnings have been in place for northern and southern Quebec since the province was hit by a snowstorm on Thursday evening.

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In Quebec, approximately 355,256 Hydro Quebec customers were affected by power outages caused by extreme weather as of early Saturday morning.

A Hydro Quebec truck is shown in an area without power in Montreal, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2022, following the winter storm. Graham Hughes/ The Canadian Press

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (Science) and the Meteorological Service of Canada issued a joint-warning concerning coastal floods for the Quebec region on Saturday, saying higher than normal water levels are expected near the shore on Saturday afternoon.

Fallen branches block a street in Montreal, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2022, following a winter storm in the region. Graham Hughes/ The Canadian Press

Along the coast in and around Quebec City, Montmagny and Charlevoix, Que., there is a risk of minor flooding, the statement said.

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Click to play video: 'Driving on Quebec roads as winter storm slams the province'
Driving on Quebec roads as winter storm slams the province

Atlantic Canada

More than 48,700 customers in the Maritimes were without power early Saturday afternoon, down from more than 90,000 earlier in the day.

Environment Canada also forecast rain and powerful gusts of wind through Christmas Eve in the Maritimes, with the storm anticipated to move into Newfoundland and Labrador on Saturday night.

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Pedestrians brave heavy wind and rain on the waterfront in Halifax on Friday, Dec. 23, 2022. Darren Calabrese/ The Canadian Press

According to the New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization (NBEMO), “a storm with rain, snow, strong gusts and elevated water levels” is forecast for Saturday.

High storm surge levels and large waves are expected to impact the coast of New Brunswick Saturday afternoon.

Click to play video: 'Winter wallop: Atlantic Canada dealing with aftermath of multi-day blizzard'
Winter wallop: Atlantic Canada dealing with aftermath of multi-day blizzard

Environment Canada has also issued a special weather statement for King County, Queen County and Prince County in Prince Edward Island.

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Currently, around 2,000 Maritimes Electric customers are experiencing power outages in Prince Edward Island.

British Columbia

In B.C., freezing rain poured over parts of Vancouver Island and Lower Mainland, with Environment Canada saying the Metro Vancouver area could see 25 to 50 millimetres of rain on Saturday.

On Vancouver Island, as much as 125 millimetres of rain is expected.

A cyclist navigates through the snow on an unplowed Robson Street as freezing rain falls in downtown Vancouver, on Friday, December 23, 2022. Darryl Dyck/ The Canadian Press

The weather agency has warned that heavy rainfall could lead to localized flooding in low-lying areas.

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B.C.’s river forecast centre has issued a flood watch for the Englishman River and South Vancouver Island and a high streamflow advisory for Vancouver Island, the south coast, and the lower mainland.

A woman carries a dog in her arms as freezing rain falls in downtown Vancouver, on Friday, Dec. 23, 2022. Darryl Dyck/ The Canadian Press

— With files from Global News’ Hannah Jackson and Ahmar Khan, and The Canadian Press

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