A significant stretch of the highway connecting Jasper to Banff is expected to be closed for several days, as the area is under a winter storm warning issued by Environment Canada.
According to 511 Alberta, the provincial government’s travel information service, there are plans to close Highway 93N from Athabasca Falls to Saskatchewan Crossing beginning at 3 p.m. Tuesday.
At about noon Thursday, the highway is expected to reopen from Athabasca Falls to Parker Ridge. However, Parker Ridge to Saskatchewan Crossing is expected to remain closed until Friday at 4 p.m.
“Up to 60 cm of new snow is expected between Tuesday, November 30 and Thursday, December 2,” the Alberta site 511 reads.
The site also noted that avalanche control activities are taking place in the area.
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“There’s a lot of moisture making its way through British Columbia right now, and we’re seeing some of it making its way over the Rocky Mountains; causing these warnings, “said Phil Darlington, Global Edmonton climate specialist.
He added that parts of Alberta could see significant wind gusts this week.
“Stronger winds are expected for the southern foothills, around 130 km / h, with areas at the extreme north of the warnings, the Hinton, Grande Prairie area, with gusts of around 90 km / h,” said Darlington. . “Either way, they have the potential to do some harm.
“If it were a tornado, those winds would be in the EF 0-1 categories.”
Darlington noted that Edmonton will likely see rain, snow and wind between Tuesday and Thursday, “but nothing like what’s happening further west.”
“It’s currently raining in Grande Prairie,” Environment Canada meteorologist Andrew Palmer told Global News Tuesday afternoon. “(There is a) risk of freezing rain there.
“Just north of Edmonton, we expect there to be a risk of freezing rain tonight.”
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Palmer added that there could be a risk of freezing rain in the Grande Prairie area again Wednesday night, noting that Edmonton could see a risk of freezing rain from Wednesday night through Thursday morning.
He noted that there was a possibility that strong winds would be felt in Calgary Tuesday night, starting at midnight.
In its winter storm warning, of which the section of Highway 93 that is being closed is below, Environment Canada said heavy snowfall combined with powerful wind gusts will reduce visibility and snow.
“Consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve,” the weather agency said on its website. “Rapidly accumulated snow could make travel difficult in some places. Visibility will suddenly drop to almost zero at times with lots of snow and snow.
“Public Safety Canada encourages everyone to make an emergency plan and obtain an emergency kit with clean water, food, medicine, a first aid kit and a flashlight.”
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Environment Canada said snow is expected to ease Thursday morning.
Palmer noted that in some areas snow is likely to turn into rain.
“After this powerful atmospheric river passes, bringing up to 80 cm of snow onto Highway 93, we have a little break,” he said in an email. “The next one, however, looks weaker, it will move offshore (BC / Washington state) Friday night (and) Saturday and affect southern Alberta.
“There will be snow in the southern foothills Saturday night and Sunday in an eastbound flow as a low is expected to develop in Montana.”
For a complete list of areas in Alberta under a weather alert, click here.
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