Blowing snow, whiteout conditions reported on area roads
Ian Welsh’s drive from Toronto to London took a lot longer than he expected.
“I started [Friday] night trying to get home. I pulled off in Cambridge at about 12 o’clock at night and stayed the night.”
The roads, he says, were treacherous. “There are spots where I couldn’t see anything.”
Environment Canada says a low pressure system moving through the province Saturday brought strong wind gusts and 5 to 10 centimetres of snow. All that blowing snow caused whiteout conditions on many rural roads and highways.
Welsh got back on Highway 401 on Saturday morning but ran into another problem near Woodstock. OPP had closed the westbound lanes due to two crashes. One involved four tractor trailers and in the second incident, a police cruiser that was hit by a passing vehicle while it was responding to another crash.
Blowing snow and whiteout conditions also led to widespread road closures across southern Ontario.
Highway 6 North to Mount Forest, Highway 7/8 to Stratford, and Highway 403 were just a few of the roads closed for part of the day due to dangerous driving conditions.
“It’s terrible,” said one motorist. “We saw 12 cars in ditches just on our side… not even counting the other side [of the road].”
North Perth also reported heavy drifting on area roads. Snow plows cleared county roads Saturday afternoon but officials say they won't be back out on the road again until Sunday morning.
Police continue to urge drivers to stay off the roads as crews try to clear the main roads.
The City of Kitchener says their “snow event” has been extended for another 24 hours. Any vehicles parked on city streets during this time will be towed at the owner’s expense and they will received an $80 ticket. The snow event will now end at midnight on Sunday.
Councillor Berry Vrbanovic says residential plows will be out on the streets as of 2 a.m. Sunday morning.
The City of Waterloo has also issued a street parking ban.