As heavy snowfall is forecast across southwestern B.C., Provincial Government is reminding British Columbians to prepare for cold temperatures, power outages and slick streets.

From this evening into Thursday morning, Environment Canada is calling for heavy snow across Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, with freezing rain expected in the Fraser Valley and the eastern sections of Metro Vancouver. On Vancouver Island, heavy snow and freezing rain is forecast for the Malahat.

Drivers are reminded to plan ahead and drive according to weather and road conditions if they must travel during this storm. Commuters should expect delays and service disruptions on transit routes.

For those who must travel, enhanced winter maintenance services are in place where necessary and will remain for as long as needed through winter. Drivers are advised to reduce their speed and use caution when they encounter poor weather or limited visibility.

* Highway 1 is expected to see more than 30 centimetres of snow, particularly in the east Fraser Valley, where snow accumulation could continue throughout Thursday.

* The Sea-to-Sky Highway between Vancouver and Whistler will receive 10 to 20 centimetres of snow beginning this evening, with rain expected to continue through Thursday.

* On Vancouver Island, 15 to 25 centimetres of snow is expected to fall on the Malahat.

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure and its maintenance contractors closely monitor conditions when the temperature is near freezing and snow is in the forecast. On Lower Mainland highways, maintenance contractors will proactively apply anti-icing brine when low temperatures are forecast, and plows are mobilized to quickly deal with any accumulation of snow.

Commercial drivers who travel outside the Greater Vancouver and Greater Victoria areas in the winter are required to carry chains, or other acceptable traction devices, and comply with all signs and regulations. A good practice is to keep chains on board at all times and to know how to install them. As winter tire regulations are in effect on designated routes, drivers are encouraged to get the best tires available. These include tires with the mountain/snowflake symbol, which provide the best traction and handling in the most challenging winter weather conditions.


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