Snow, rain and wind hit Canada coast-to-coast

A storm system has brought significant snowfall to parts of Ontario and Quebec, while the West Coast and Maritimes are being soaked by heavy rain and flooding.

Powerful nor'easter dumps snow in Ontario and Quebec while rain and flooding sweep B.C. and Maritimes

A storm system has brought significant snowfall to parts of Ontario and Quebec, while the West Coast and Maritimes are being soaked by heavy rain and flooding.

There were fewer weather warnings and watches on Thursday, but many areas were still dealing with a blast of winter weather.

In Montreal and parts of southern Quebec, weather warnings have been lifted and people were digging out after a heavy snowfall.

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The snow caused chaos during Toronto's morning commute, and people were being cautioned to drive with extra care in the evening as plows worked to catch up both in the city and on the highways.

"The snow is heavy at times with 15 to 20 centimetres of accumulation today," Environment Canada said of the Toronto area. "Even 25-30 centimetres is possible in some areas, particularly near the south shore of Lake Ontario."

Police in Ontario's York Region were warning people to be cautious when warming up their cars, saying there had been cases reported of thieves making off with cars left unattended.

Snowfall warnings remain in effect for regions near Georgian Bay to the Algonquin and North Bay areas.

Other areas, including Waterloo, Hamilton, Niagara, Brantford and Woodstock were also dealing with the earlier snowfall, with some areas still under weather warnings from Environment Canada.

Ottawa paramedics urged people to be careful after an 84-year-old man collapsed and died Thursday morning while shovelling snow in his driveway. If you are unusually short of breath or have chest discomfort while shovelling, paramedics say, stop immediately and call 911.

At Toronto's Pearson airport, airport officials are asking passengers to check flight statuses before arriving.

The snow, the result of a low-pressure system that moved northwest from Cape Cod yesterday, is forecast to taper off later today over central and southwestern Ontario.

Meanwhile, torrential rain that flooded roads and bridges across the Maritimes is slowly moving away, but high winds and rain continue to plague parts of the region.

Coastal rain and winds

Environment Canada meteorologist Jeremy March said the biggest punch packed by the weather system has passed, but rain continues to fall in eastern Nova Scotia as well across eastern and northern New Brunswick and most of Prince Edward Island.

"The rain that's happening over the Maritimes will weaken and move off over to Newfoundland later today," said March earlier on Wednesday.

In southeastern New Brunswick, some roads were still closed or partially restricted by flooding. One resident told CBC News he was stunned to see a van stuck in a giant hole in the road after the heavy rain.

A thick layer of snow covers the Supreme Court of Canada building in Ottawa. The city saw 15 cm of snow fall yesterday and another few centimetres are expected today. (Laura Payton/CBC)

In Nova Scotia, the rain set records in some areas, CBC meteorologist Kalin Mitchell said

Out west, Environment Canada is warning of freezing rain in parts of northern Alberta.

In B.C., residents got a break Thursday morning after a series of subtropical storms that have been soaking the region this week — but only for a few hours.

Environment Canada forecasts one more storm will hit the coast later in the day, once again bringing heavy rain and high winds before cooler drier weather arrives for the weekend.

Several days of rain have already triggered evacuations and flood watches across Vancouver Island and Metro Vancouver.

With files from The Canadian Press


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