Heavy snow affecting travel, power in the South Thompson, Shuswap, North Okanagan - InfoNews

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Heavy snow affecting travel, power in the South Thompson, Shuswap, North Okanagan

Image Credit: File photo
December 31, 2019 - 10:58 AM

Heavy snowfall in the South Thompson, Shuswap and North Okanagan is wreaking havoc on the region’s roads and power grid today.

BC Hydro is reporting extensive outages due to heavy, wet snow overnight and this morning in the Vernon, Enderby, Salmon Arm, Sicamous, Chase, Blind Bay and Sorrento.

The utility says approximately 18,000 customers are without power this morning, Dec. 31, with crews responding as quickly as possible. As power is restored, BC Hydro will post updates to its website here.

An Environment Canada issued snowfall warning remains in effect for the North Okanagan, including Vernon, the Central Okanagan, including Kelowna, and the South Thompson. Up to 10 centimetres of snow is expected to fall before the snow turns to rain near midnight.

The City of Vernon and Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP are encouraging motorists to stay off the roads if at all possible today.

The City says in a press release that the snow last night and today, along with temperatures hovering around the freezing mark, have made driving conditions icy in the city. Crews are responding with all equipment and crews available.

Motorists are encouraged not to park on city streets to allow snow plow drivers room to clear roadways. Vernon residents are also reminded to keep sidewalks in front of their properties clear of snow.

Drive BC lists Highway 97C as the only route currently closed in the southern Interior due to a vehicle fire involving dangerous goods.

For the very latest road conditions go to the DriveBC website here.

For the latest on the snowfall warnings go the the Environment Canada website here.

BC Hydro is responding to numerous power outages this morning, Dec. 31, 2019.
BC Hydro is responding to numerous power outages this morning, Dec. 31, 2019.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / BC Hydro

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