Arctic outflow and snowfall warnings for Vancouver Island on Boxing Day

Arctic outflow and snowfall warnings for Vancouver Island on Boxing Day

Environment Canada has issued more severe weather warnings for Vancouver Island, including an arctic outflow warning, as temperatures dip below freezing and many areas deal with snowy conditions.

A snowfall warning is in effect for the Malahat Highway, from Goldstream to Mill Bay, with another 5 cm expected today.

A snowfall warning is also in effect for Greater Victoria and the East Island, from Duncan to Nanaimo.

Environment Canada says those areas could see another 2 to 5 cm this morning due to an unstable air mass combined with frigid outflow winds.

Some higher elevations between Duncan and Nanaimo may get more than 5 cm and Environment Canada is warning that rapidly accumulating snow will make travel difficult.

The Saanich Police Department has issued a travel alert advising drivers of “degrading road conditions throughout the region” and asking people to avoid driving unless absolutely necessary, due to snow and  icy roads.

An arctic outflow warning has also been issued for the East Vancouver Island from Courtenay to Campbell River, as well as Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Howe Sound, the Sea to Sky Highway, Whistler, and parts of the Sunshine Coast as an arctic ridge of high pressure produces bitterly cold conditions between now and Wednesday.

The outflow winds combined with falling temperatures are expected to produce wind chill values below minus 20 and result in record or near-record cold.

Frostbite and hypothermia can occur within minutes in those conditions if you’re not dressed for the weather.

The latest weather warnings come after the most extreme year on record for Vancouver Island and parts of the mainland.

Tess van StraatenTess van Straaten

Recent Stories

Send us your news tips and videos!