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1967 snowstorm is still one of Canada's worst and it happened in April

Sunday, April 17th 2022, 6:09 am - On this day in weather history, storms started to pummel Alberta.

This Day In Weather History is a daily podcast by Chris Mei from The Weather Network, featuring stories about people, communities and events and how weather impacted them.


On Monday, April 17, 1967, a storm hit southern Alberta and it stayed strong until the 20th. The storm covered the province in deep snow. There wasn't enough time for the snow to melt before another blizzard hit the area between April 27-29.

The storm amassed 175 cm of snow in certain areas. Because the province is used to springtime during this time of year, cattle were already out in the pastures.

Both the Canadian and U.S. armies sent helicopters to airlift feed for the cattle, but many were stranded unable to reach food and thousands died.

Delivering groceries by helicopter during the April/May 1967 blizzards. Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society (Facebook) Helicopters delivering groceries during the April/May 1967 blizzards. Courtesy of Lethbridge Historical Society/Facebook

Helicopters also transported fuel and food to people who were stranded in southern Alberta. Even trains were called into the rescue mission.

A Canadian Pacific Railway unit was sent to rescue stranded motorists. The train pushed a plow through the snow and rescued 30 people stranded in their cars.

Screen Shot 2021-04-08 at 10.02.19 PMA road and field at Wilson is flooded by melting snow from the April/May snowstorms. Elevators and houses are visible. 1967. Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society (Facebook) *"A road and field at Wilson is flooded by melting snow." Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society/Facebook*

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CJOC in Lethbridge became a dedicated radio station that provided 24-hour emergency messaging.

During the storms, businesses and schools were closed. Then, the temperature started to warm up and all the snow melted causing widespread flooding.

Farmland and roads are flooded following the April/May snowstorms. The top of a barbed wire fence and bushes are visible. 1967. Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society (Facebook) *"Farmland and roads are flooded following the April/May snowstorms." Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society/Facebook*

The revenue minister decided to have some blizzard-mercy and gave southern Albertans a two-week tax deadline extension.

To learn more about the 1967 Alberta storm, listen to today's episode of "This Day In Weather History."

Subscribe to 'This Day in Weather History': Apple Podcasts | Amazon Alexa | Google Assistant | Spotify | Google Podcasts | iHeartRadio | Overcast'

Thumbnail: "A United States Air Force helicopter checks frozen cattle following the April/May snowstorm." Courtesy Lethbridge Historical Society/Facebook

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