Much of coastal British Columbia is braced for a brief but powerful windstorm while snowfall and winter storm warnings stretch from the inland north coast all the way to the northeast corner of the province.
Environment Canada says a fast-moving cold front crossing the south coast and a low-pressure system north of Vancouver Island will create winds up to 90 km/h in the south and 110 km/h over northern parts of the Island and central coast.
The system arrives at the same time as unusually high tides, raising the potential for flooding and prompting cities such as Courtenay to issue storm surge advisories or install portable flood barriers along low-lying areas.
Lewis Park in #Courtenay is under water though, as is often the case in a storm event like this. At least all the snow from last night is gone. Temperature is now over +10° @CHEK_News @armelcastellan #bcstorm pic.twitter.com/xvrnWj5FHn
— Dean Stoltz (@deanstoltzchek) November 17, 2020
Expected winds caused BC Ferries to cancel many morning sailings between Vancouver Island and the Mainland, but forecasters say winds should ease by afternoon – although it will remain gusty.
BC Ferries has already cancelled the below sailings on its major routes in anticipating of winds throughout Tuesday morning:
Swartz Bay – Tsawwassen
7:00 am departing Tsawwassen
9:00 am departing Swartz Bay
7:00 am departing Swartz Bay
9:00 am departing Tsawwassen
Nanaimo (Duke Point) – Tsawwassen
5:15 am departing Duke Point
7:45 am departing Tsawwassen
10:15 am departing Duke Point
12:45 pm departing Tsawwassen
5:15 am departing Tsawwassen
7:45 am departing Duke Point
10:15 am departing Tsawwassen
12:45 pm departing Duke Point
Nanaimo (Departure Bay) – Horseshoe Bay
6:15 departing Departure Bay – Nanaimo
8:25 departing Horseshoe Bay
6:15 departing Horseshoe Bay
8:25 departing Departure Bay – Nanaimo
Further information on sailings can be found on the BC Ferries website.
Thousands of Vancouver Island residents are also waking up without power this morning as a result of the high winds.
Large outages are being experienced in Campbell River, Port Alberni, Ucluelet, Tofino, Sointula and on Quadra Island.
BC Hydro has dispatched crews to several of the major Vancouver Island outages already this morning.
To monitor the status of any power outage, Vancouver Islanders can visit the BC Hydro outages map.
In addition to the winds, several parts of Vancouver Island experienced snowfall as part of the same storm system.