Expect winter driving conditions on Coquihalla for next 48 hours | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Expect winter driving conditions on Coquihalla for next 48 hours

A substantial amount of snow is expected to fall on the Coquihalla Highway between Hope and Merritt today and overnight.
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April 07, 2021 - 10:01 AM

Motorists travelling mountain passes in and out of the Thompson and Okanagan valleys should be prepared for winter driving conditions over the next 48 hours.

Environment Canada meteorologist Lisa Erven says a low pressure system moving across the Southern Interior is expected to bring cooler temperatures and snow to mountain passes.

“Travellers using the Coquihalla, the Okanagan Connector and Rogers Pass should all be prepared for snowy conditions near the higher elevations. The greatest snowfall is expected along the Coquihalla, Hope to Merritt section, where a potential five to 10 centimetres of snow is expected today, an additional five to 10 cm overnight and maybe a few more centimetres tomorrow as the system moves on,” Erven says.

The Connector could see two to six cm between today, April 7, and tomorrow with the Merritt to Kamloops section of the Coquihalla expected to receive only a few centimetres.

The Trans-Canada Highway through Rogers Pass could receive five to 10 cm today with another two to four cm possible tonight.

“April is a tricky month. Some of these storm systems moving through this month are accompanied by cool air masses which drop freezing levels below the elevation of highway passes. Spring snow can catch drivers by surprise, especially after seeing temperatures in the high teens in the valley bottoms,” Erven says.

Snow flurries may be possible in Kamloops and the Okanagan cities of Vernon, Kelowna and Penticton overnight, but Erven says it’s unlikely there will be any accumulation.

Motorists are also reminded winter tires are required on most British Columbia mountain highways until April 30.

Drivers should check road conditions on the Drive BC website here.

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