KAMLOOPS — Kamloopsians be prepared: the above seasonal temperatures and lack of snowfall you've been enjoying is about to end.
Environment Canada says a low pressure system is about to hammer much of British Columbia, including Kamloops.
"The snow is expected to begin near midnight or just after tonight," says meteorologist Lisa West. "It's going to continue throughout the day on Tuesday and then taper off early Wednesday morning."
That means 10 centimentres of snow for the Kamloops region before things are said and done.
As for area highways, West says the closer you get to the US-Canada border, the more snow you can expect.
"For areas such as the Coquihalla between Hope and Merritt, also Highway 3 along Allison Pass and even similar amounts for the Okanagan Connector, we're looking at total storm amounts beginning tonight and going through to Wednesday morning, of about 20 to 25 centimetres.
"The further north you go on the Coquihalla northern sections from Merritt to Kamloops for example, a little less, around 10-15 centimetres."
The roads are so treacherous that Drive BC issued a travel advisory on the Coquihalla between Merritt and Hope today.
West says you won't be able to completely avoid the white stuff by taking the Fraser Canyon either.
"Freezing levels are going to drop even out towards the coast so even travelling down through the Fraser Canyon travellers should expect to see snow reaching the valley floor," West says. "For the Fraser Canyon we have snowfall amounts of two to four centimetres and then increasing to another five to 10 throughout Tuesday. So, really there's no great way around this."
If you must drive, she recommends going slow, leaving extra distance between yourself and other cars, and informing others of your schedule and destination. West says it's also a good idea to carry an emergency kit and some warm blankets in case you get stuck.
Once the snow lets up on Wednesday there's more bad news as on Thursday an Arctic front is expected to move in from northern B.C.
"So for the next couple days we have highs around zero but once this Arctic air mass moves we're looking at highs of only -7 and lows getting down into the (negative) teens," says West.
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