Heavy snow on Coquihalla, bitter cold in northwest and central B.C.: weather alert

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VANCOUVER – Environment Canada is warning of heavy snow on the Coquihalla Highway and bitterly cold temperatures in British Columbia’s northwest as arctic air sweeps across the province.

Up to 20 centimetres of snow is expected to fall on the highway between Hope and Merritt before easing Sunday afternoon and the snow will also blanket nearby areas of the Fraser Canyon and Fraser Valley.

The weather agency warns that strong winds will blow the snow, at times reducing visibility suddenly to zero.

A frostbite warning is also in effect for the central and northern coasts and stretching inland to include communities like Kitimat, Stewart and Terrace.

Powerful coastal winds gusting near 80 km/h will combine with low temperatures to push wind chills down near -20 C.

Environment Canada says the cold will continue through Wednesday.

“If outside, dress warmly in layers and stay dry. Cover as much exposed skin as possible to avoid frostbite,” it says.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 17, 2022.

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