After what's expected to be a wet night tonight, a wintry blast is set to surge through Hamilton Thursday morning.
According to Environment Canada, Hamilton was drenched by 22 mm of rain Tuesday night — but that's not the end of the storm system.
"More rain is coming," said Peter Kimbell, a warning preparedness meteorologist with Environment Canada. "A mass of precipitation is establishing itself over Hamilton right now."
'Roads staff are monitoring the forecast and are ready to respond to the weather conditions. We will call in additional staff to assist if needed.'—Kelly Anderson, Hamilton public works
Kimbell says he expects 10 to 20 mm of rain to soak the city throughout the day on Wednesday, followed by another 10 to 15 mm Wednesday night.
But the real fun starts early Thursday, when strong northeasterly winds will cause the temperature to drop and bring ice pellets to the region.
According to the Environment Canada website, a messy mix of ice pellets and freezing rain is expected to develop late overnight and continue throughout Thursday and much of Thursday night. It may be heavy at times and be accompanied by a few rumbles of thunder.
Kimbell says Hamilton could see as much as 5 cm of ice pellets fall.
Freezing rain amounts up to 10 mm are quite possible in many areas, with some regions possibly exceeding 20 mm, Environment Canada says.
Kelly Anderson, a spokeperson for the city's public works department, told CBC Hamilton that the city's entire fleet of snow plows and salters is available for deployment if the roads need clearing.
"Roads staff are monitoring the forecast and are ready to respond to the weather conditions," she wrote in an email. "We will call in additional staff to assist if needed."
"It's very unusual temperatures for the tenth of April," Kimbell said — though he points to a GTA storm in 1939 that brought almost 30 cm of snow to the region to prove that just about anything can happen in Canada in spring.
Kimbell cautions that drivers are likely going to need to take extra precautions during the morning commute on Thursday — especially if they've already had their winter tires removed.
"People assume winter is over — but here we are," he said.
Kimbell said things should improve on Friday, but he doesn't have a prediction about when temperatures will rise to spring-like levels.