Brief, but intense winter weather wallops Newfoundland Thursday

Special weather statements continue to line Newfoundland for a brief, but intense blast of winter weather forecast across the island on Thursday. Brace for quickly deteriorating travel conditions through the afternoon hours

Parts of Newfoundland will see the return of winter travel through Thursday, with strong winds and snow threatening to whip up blizzard-like conditions in some areas.

Although it will be brief, the few hours of these mid-April wintry conditions could get intense, especially with the worst of it poorly timed with the afternoon and evening commute.

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Drivers are urged to plan ahead, and to stay up-to-date on the weather warnings as the conditions quickly deteriorate. Remember, many have likely already removed winter tires, so travel conditions could get quite dicey at times.

Thursday: Snow and winds intensify

A system will stall and then strengthen offshore through Thursday, all thanks to a weakening Rex block over the Atlantic Ocean.

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It began to back into the north coast of the island early Thursday morning, bringing in some snow flurries to start across the Gander area.

Snowfall rates will begin to pick up, and spread east throughout the day, likely impacting drivers in time for the evening commute.

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Winds from the north will also be strong, gusting to 80 to 100 km/h, threatening whiteout, and even blizzard-like conditions through the afternoon and evening hours.

"The snow event will likely coincide with this afternoon's rush hour," says Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) in the special weather statement. "Road conditions could deteriorate quickly as snow begins to accumulate; it will only partially melt on roads and other surfaces."

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The immediate coastlines will likely see a transition over to rainfall through the overnight hours on Thursday. Precipitation may mix with freezing rain and sleet as it changes from snow to rain, resulting in some slick and icy conditions into Friday morning, as well.

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There is still some uncertainty with exact snowfall totals and locations due to the marginal temperatures and mixing with rain, but the hardest-hit areas, including Gander, could see as much as 15 cm. A widespread 5-10 cm is likely elsewhere, with less than 5 cm forecast in the city of St. John's. Areas that do see rain following the snow however, will likely wash out any of the higher accumulations.

Quiet weather returns for most of next week, and no major systems are expected.

WATCH: Hearing 'Rex Block' in your forecast? What it means for your weather

Be sure to check back for the latest weather details across Newfoundland.