B.C. winter storm hits Interior, Fraser Valley
Vancouver and Victoria see very little snow, but other parts of the province received significant snowfall
The first major winter storm forecast for 2015 brought mainly rain to Vancouver Island and Metro Vancouver, but caused significant snowfall in other parts of B.C.
Rain turned to snow in many parts of the Fraser Valley late Sunday morning and storm warnings were in effect all day for the B.C. Interior and along the Sea-to-Sky Highway where an additional 10 to 15 cm of snow was expected to fall Sunday night.
Coastal areas received some snow at higher elevations, but it was the Interior, the Sea-to-Sky Highway and the Fraser Valley that bore the brunt of the storm.
With temperatures Sunday morning hovering near zero or just below, it was slippery everywhere including eastern sections of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley where a number of accidents were reported due to icy conditions.
In Surrey, a car slid into a tree trapping a man inside his vehicle around 11 a.m. PT. Other weather related accidents included rollovers in Maple Ridge, Kamloops and Revelstoke and a pedestrian struck in Chilliwack.
Snow in the Fraser Valley was forecast to change to heavy rain Sunday night as warm Pacific air flooded the region with the possibility it would turn to freezing rain.
Travellers along the Sea-to-Sky Highway reported treacherous road conditions. Some were upset the highway wasn't being better maintained.
"Someone is going to have to do some serious explaining on how the Sea-to-Sky highway reached the condition it is in right now," tweeted Laila Yuile.
Heading north on the Sea-to-Sky Highway.Traffic moving slow," tweeted Erica Henderson around 2 p.m. PT.
As the day wore on, conditions worsened. Traffic slowed to a crawl until in some spots it finally stopped. Several people reported waiting in traffic line-ups for hours.
Snow, at times heavy, was forecast for the Fraser Canyon with 5 to 10 cm today, and 10 to 15 cm of snow Sunday night.
Environment Canada advised the mountain passes including the Coquihalla Highway could expect up to 30 cm of new snow overnight Sunday.
In the Okanagan where snow has been falling all day the forecast called for 10 cm of snow, and between 20 to 30 cm of snow Sunday night.
Similar amounts of snow were forecast for the rest of the Southwest and Southeast Interior including the Kootenays.
Environment Canada recommended postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve.
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