More snow, frigid temperatures welcome the first weekend of spring in Ontario
Friday, March 21, 2014, 2:32 PM -
From sunglasses to snow shovels, Friday will be a tale of two seasons across much of Ontario.
SPRING IS HERE: When will the warm-up begin?
"Sunny skies are expected on Friday, though temperatures will still remain below seasonal," says Brett Soderholm, a meteorologist at The Weather Network. "Then another clipper system will pass over the Greater Toronto Area in the late evening hours and will last until Saturday morning."
On Friday afternoon, Environment Canada issued a series of freezing rain warnings, covering communities in and around Toronto, Hamilton, Vaughn, Huron and Perth.
The weather agency is calling the upcoming storm a "potent disturbance" that could bring slippery conditions to warned regions Friday evening.
"Although the duration of the freezing rain is not expected to be significant, the accumulation of a few millimetres of ice will lead to hazardous conditions on untreated roads," EC warns.
Snowfall warnings are in effect for communities in and around Newmarket, Barrie, Owen Sound, Ottawa, Bracebridge and Haliburton, among other places.
Although some uncertainty remains with the track of the system, most regions extending from southern Lake Huron to the Golden Horseshoe are forecast to see the precipitation start as snow or freezing rain with a mix of ice pellets possible at times.
"Snowfall accumulations in the 5-10+ cm range are expected for regions just north of Highway 401, including Toronto," Soderholm says.
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"The exception is from Sarnia-Lambton to areas along the north shore of Lake Erie where rain is most likely, with a risk of freezing rain," adds Environment Canada in a special weather statement issued early Friday.
Heavier amounts of snow are expected from Grey-Bruce through the Kawarthas to Kingston and Brockville.
"Snow will reach the Ottawa Valley and Cornwall areas overnight with most of the snow falling Saturday," EC says.
Officials are warning drivers to exercise caution as untreated roads may be slippery and visibilities may be reduced.
The official start to spring began on Thursday although signs of the season were scarce in southern Ontario.
A messy system that pushed through the region on Wednesday brought everything from widespread rain, snow and localized freezing rain.
"Strong wind gusts were recorded across much of southern Ontario Thursday, with gusts over 70 km/h reported in some places," Soderholm says. "Now we'll see this next system move through and a noticeable drop in temperature is expected for Sunday."
So when will the spring WEATHER actually arrive? Get an expert analysis here.