Heavy snow grounds flights in Toronto and prompts universities to close

Here's hoping you're not on your way to Toronto airport — at least 60 flights have been cancelled since snow began blanketing the city around 3 p.m. The heavy snowfall prompted some universities to reschedule Thursday night exams and other community events were cancelled.

Heavy snow and wind also caused collisions across the Greater Toronto Area

Police agencies across the Greater Toronto Area reported a higher number of collisions during rush-hour traffic Thursday. (Pascal Marchand)

Here's hoping you're not on your way to Toronto's Pearson International Airport — at least 60 flights have been cancelled since snow began blanketing the city around 3 p.m. 

Some flights have still been getting out, but 46 have been delayed already and at least a dozen more are showing a later boarding time into the evening.

A mixture of red and orange also covered the departures board at Billy Bishop City Centre Airport on Toronto Island. At least seven flights had been cancelled, while another 15 have been delayed since 3 p.m. 

Thursday's mix of rain, snow and freezing rain have caused flight delays at Toronto's Pearson airport. Air Canada is allowing passengers on affected flights to rebook without penalty, space permitting. (Jonathan Castell/CBC)

Environment Canada issued a winter travel advisory for Toronto and much of southern Ontario Thursday as a projected five-to-10 centimetres of snow began falling in the mid-afternoon.

The heavy snow and wind also caused whiteout conditions on roads and highways across the Greater Toronto Area. Toronto police and other agencies warned drivers to take it slow as seven rush-hour collisions were reported by 5:30 p.m. in the city alone. 

Police also reported that drivers were struggling to make it up the hill on Bayview Avenue, because of the slippery conditions. Tractor-trailers also began piling up near Steeles Avenue and Alness Street in North York for the same reason.

It's no better for those commuters travelling by public transit. 

The TTC suspended trains on the Scarborough Rapid Transit line, also known as Line 3, at 5:50 p.m. because the cold had interfered with signal service. Instead, shuttle buses are running between Kennedy and McCowan stations.

And the commission warned riders to expect anyone taking a bus or streetcar to expect a slow ride home.

University exams

The snowfall gave some students extra time to cram. York University and Humber College cancelled their Thursday night exams, but as of 5 p.m. Ryerson University said it would be open for the time being.

Not everyone was impressed.