Winter’s back in Calgary and the heavy snow has been making getting around the city a challenge.
“The weather has created winter driving conditions. If you do not need to be on the roads today, we are recommending that you do not travel,” the Calgary Police Service said.
Calgary police said more than 200 collisions were reported from midnight to 4 p.m, more than half of the 213 crashes coming in the afternoon.
Twenty of those resulted in injury and 15 were hit-and-run crashes.
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The collisions slowed traffic on major arteries like Deerfoot Trail, Stoney Trail, 16 Avenue N., Glenmore Trail, Macleod Trail, Bow Trail, Barlow Trail and Shaganappi Trail.
Area highways had collisions near places like Cochrane, Okotoks, and Carstairs.
Calgary Transit bus routes throughout the city were also impacted by the driving conditions.
“We are working to get buses back in services as quickly as possible and to get our customers where they need to go safely,” a transit spokesperson said in a statement. “Customers are encouraged to give themselves plenty of time, dress for the weather and check calgarytransit.com for routes that are on detour.”
City snow crews were out early after between three to five centimetres fell around Calgary by 7 a.m.
The City of Calgary said crews started clearing priority routes early in the morning, putting down material to help with traction where needed.
Crews were also clearing pedestrian infrastructure, downtown cycle tracks, business routes in the downtown core and at LRT stations. The city did not anticipate needing to declare a snow route parking ban.
The snow also impacted air travel in and out of the Calgary International Airport, with 33 flights being cancelled and many more delayed.
Westjet confirmed 30 flights coming in and out of Calgary were cancelled and five flights were diverted.
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“We sincerely apologize for the disruption,” the airline said. “We have added five extra segments to assist impacted guests. All guests who have been impacted will be reaccommodated on the first available flight option, either later this evening or first thing tomorrow.”
Travellers are advised to check the status of their flight before leaving for the airport.
Temperatures are expected to drop throughout Friday and into Saturday, bringing more wintery weather with it.
“It’s the polar vortex moving in,” Global Calgary weather anchor Jodi Hughes said.
“As this preciptiation lands on surfaces and we see these temperatures continue to decline, this means it’s going to freeze, our surfaces will freeze,” Hughes said. “So underneath whatever snowfall we are going to get, we will have icy conditions in many locations.”
She warned the icy conditions will likely be seen on roads, parking lots and sidewalks.