Edmonton streets and sidewalks slick after freezing rain

Freezing rain turned some Edmonton city streets and sidewalks into skating rinks during rush hour Friday morning.

Winter rain made roads treacherous for Friday morning commuters

A man shakes ice melter onto a sidewalk in front of a home in the area of 37th Avenue and 111th Street on Friday morning. (Trevor Wilson/CBC)

Freezing rain turned some Edmonton city streets and sidewalks into skating rinks during rush hour Friday morning.

Commuters struggled to navigate the icy roads, leading to numerous fender benders and single vehicle accidents throughout the early morning.

Police are urging Edmontonians to drive with caution in the city, where temperatures hovered just above freezing.

"Anywhere in the city right now, with the rain we had, the roads are are going to be icy," Staff Sgt. Ashley Emerson told CBC News. 

"The main thoroughfares aren't so bad but the side streets are extremely icy. 

"Even some of the members are saying it's difficult to stand on the road surfaces right now."

RCMP are warning motorists of extremely icy conditions on Winterburn Road between secondary Highway 627 and secondary Highway 628.

Stony Plain/Spruce Grove/Enoch RCMP responded to eight vehicle collisions into ditches during the last few hours, they said in a news release. Travel in the area is not recommended unless necessary, police said.
Edmontonians woke up Friday to scenes like this one, in the area of 113th Street and 38th Avenue. (Trevor Wilson/CBC)

Drivers are asked to use caution around emergency crews.

Due to extremely icy road conditions, Elk Island Public Schools buses in Strathcona County, urban Sherwood Park and Fort Saskatchewan were cancelled Friday morning, officials with the division said in an email. 

Crashes were reported across the southeast, including a gravel truck that spilled its load into the street as it veered into a ditch on 17th Street, south of the Anthony Henday freeway.

No one was injured in the crash, said Emerson.

Surfaces such as walkways and parking lots were also icy and slippery from the overnight rainfall, and mild winter temperatures.

Freezing rain warnings are in effect for Fort McMurray, Fort Chipewyan, Garden Creek and Mildred Lake areas.

Environment Canada said freezing rain continued to fall across northeastern Alberta Friday morning, but is expected to taper off by early afternoon.

Drivers are encouraged to use caution in affected areas and monitor Environment Canada for updates.