Record-breaking cold in Kamloops, Okanagan overnight | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Record-breaking cold in Kamloops, Okanagan overnight

In West Kelowna temperatures dipped to below zero last evening, May 18, 2021.
May 19, 2021 - 11:25 AM

It’s been a week of weather extremes in Kamloops and the Okanagan over the last few days with record-breaking cold temperatures overnight.

Daytime highs reached the 30 Celsius range this past weekend, only to be followed by a return to near-zero temperatures overnight in the region.

Environment Canada meteorologist Doug Lundquist says cold temperature records were set early this morning, May 19, in Kamloops and Penticton, but Kelowna and Vernon were also very close to record-setting territory.

Kamloops recorded 1.3 C at the airport breaking the old record of 2.1 C set in 2003, while Penticton dropped to a low of -0.8 C breaking the old record of 0.3 C also set in 2003.

For those who planted their tomato plants in the garden last weekend, Lundquist says hopefully it wasn't "cold enough for long enough" to do any frost damage.

Special weather statements were issued Monday and Tuesday by Environment Canada for snow on mountain passes.

Lundquist says the Coquihalla Summit on Highway 5 and Allison Pass on Highway 3 received around three to five centimetres at higher elevations, but there was little accumulation on roadways. There could be a few centimetres of snow on the Kootenay Pass on Highway 3 and possibly the Rogers Pass on Highway 1 tonight as the weather system moves east.

“There has been snow in the higher terrain, and with even just a little bit overnight, people are travelling and aren’t used to it already,” Lundquist says.

Kamloops city councillor Mike O’Reilly retweeted a video showing snow falling in the city yesterday.

There is good news. A slow warm up is in store for Kamloops and the Okanagan in time for the May long weekend.

Today, May 19, there is a chance of showers or thundershowers in Kamloops and the Okanagan with highs of around 18 C.

There’s a continuing chance of showers through tomorrow for Kamloops and the Okanagan, with temperatures ranging between 15 C and 20 C.

Sunny conditions and a return to highs in the low 20s are forecast for Friday as we head into the long weekend.

“My biggest concern is not the cold we had, but the fact we aren’t receiving any precipitation," Lundquist says. "If May is close to record as really dry, that will be three months in a row, and we need the seasonal rains."

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