Winter storm pounds southern Quebec
Sherbrooke goes into emergency mode as snow piles up
A winter storm moving across Quebec on Monday closed roads, shut down schools and prompted at least one city to institute its emergency measures plan.
By day's end the storm had dumped between 15 and 70 centimetres of snow on the province, with Sherbrooke suffering the biggest snowfall.
The city set up a command post to monitor the progress of snow-clearing crews and to make sure emergency vehicles could reach people in need of assistance.
"Since this morning, our police officers have been helping all kind of people — doctors to go to the hospital, people who are sick," said Sherbrooke police spokesman Martin Carrier.
All schools and universities in the Sherbrooke area closed for the day.
Across the province, many school boards cancelled classes as well. However, the English Montreal School Board, the Lester B. Pearson School Board and the Commission Scolaire de Montréal said their schools would remain open.
1,000 snow-removal vehicles at work
After heavy weekend snowfalls in Montreal, another 15 centimetres of snow fell the city on Monday.
"This drifting snow doesn't help us," he said.
Frenette said people should avoid driving if they can.
"What we ask the population is to use the public transit. If you come in by car, be careful," said Frenette.
He expects it will take about five days to completely remove the snow from streets and sidewalks. He advised people to follow the parking restriction signs to help speed things along.
Vanguard School (Montreal): Three campuses in Ville Saint-Laurent, Westmount and Laval closed
Riverside School Board (South Shore): All schools and centres closed
New Frontiers School Board (Châteauguay): All schools, adult centres and administrative offices closed and off-territory schools serviced by New Frontiers buses have no transportation
Marie-Victorin School Board (Longueuil): All schools and centres closed
Montreal Oral School for the Deaf: Closed for staff and students
École bilingue Notre-Dame de Sion (Ville St-Laurent): Private elementary school closed.
Eastern Townships School Board: All schools and daycares closed
Bishop's University (Eastern Townships): Classes cancelled but university building open
Commissions scolaires des Bois-Francs et Des Chênes (Mauricie): Schools closed, adult courses open, daycares open
Le Collège St-Bernard: Closed
Shiagawake/Port Daniels School: Closed
CEGEP Gaspésie / Les Iles: Closed
Gaspé Polyvalent: Closed
Gaspé Elementary: School closed including the daycare
Belle-Anse School: Closed
Wakeham Adult Education Centre: Closed
New Carlisle High School: Closed
Gaspé College: Gaspé campus closed
Commission Scolaire des Premières Seigneuries: Adult training centre closed
Professional training centre of Fierbourg and the Charlesbourg training centre: Closed
Plane skids off tarmac
The snowy conditions also contributed to an Air Canada flight skidding off the tarmac. The plane was travelling at a very low speed at the time. No one was hurt.
An Air Canada spokesperson said the plane was headed back to the gate for maintenance when it skidded on some ice and one wheel slipped off the tarmac.
Passengers had to leave the plane so workers could tow it back to the gate.
Weekend accidents fatal
Over the weekend, another weather system brought rain across the province.
Quebec provincial police said icy roads were factors in four deaths on provincial highways.
Just before noon on Sunday, a 33-year-old man died after a car he was travelling in slid into a ditch filled with water on Highway 10 near Saint-Alphonse-de-Granby. Three other people in the vehicle were sent to hospital.
Also on Sunday, a 21-year-old man died after his car flipped and hit a semi-trailer on Highway 40 in Montreal's West Island. The accident happened near the Saint-Jean exit.
Fatal accidents also occurred in the Saguenay and Eastern Townships regions.