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This is spring? April snow catches drivers off guard in southern Ontario

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Andrea Bagley
Digital Reporter

Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 1:04 PM -

This is spring? That's likely the question on many minds as parts of Ontario woke up to April SNOW on Tuesday.

"After a long awaited taste of summer, winter returns with a snowy vengeance," said Environment Canada in a special weather statement early Tuesday.

A sharp arctic cold front has passed through southern Ontario ushering out the mild air the region has been enjoying for the past few days.

"In the wake of the front, northwesterly winds are returning much colder arctic air to the regions, with temperature plunging to below freezing from Dunnville through the Greater Toronto Area to Renfrew areas and northwestward," EC adds.

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"It's not the cold that's the concern, but rather the snow," adds meteorologists at The Weather Network.

Rain showers transitioned through a brief period of freezing rain and ice pellets before changing to snow early Tuesday morning.

As a result, driving conditions deteriorated quickly, with low visibility and heavy snow reported in some places.

"A very wet start across the GTA changing to freezing rain and then wet snow during the morning commute," Beat The Traffic tweeted.

A collision was reported on Highway 427 before 6 am, resulting in a tractor trailer flip over. According to police, ice pellets were falling at the time of the crash.

No injuries were reported, but the Ministry of the Environment was called because of a fuel spill. Police say the contents of the truck are not flammable.

Between 4-8 cm of snow is forecast in the GTA, with heavier amounts expected further north.

"The greater impact however, will be the fact that we had such a mild and summer-like weekend so another snow event is generally not anticipated by the public," says Weather Network meteorologist Dayna Vettese. "Winds will be gusting between 40-60 km/h so local blowing and drifting snow are a concern as well."

RELATED: Five maps you need for Tuesday

Several schools warned of possible bus delays and those with air travel plans are encouraged to call ahead Tuesday.

"Snow should come to an end for the GTA and southwestern Ontario by midday, but eastern Ontario and southern Quebec should change over to snow throughout the afternoon and evening hours Tuesday," Vettese says.

The good news?

"The snow will end over all regions late in the day," EC adds. "Winter's victory will be only temporary as temperatures will moderate back up closer to normal by the end of the week."

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