Freezing rain, snow pelts Southern Ontario in weekend storm

A risk of freezing rain on Thursday afternoon could make for hazardous road conditions

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for Sarnia-Lambton, London-Middlesex, Elgin County, and Oxford County advising of a slow-moving weather system that is expected to a significant risk of freezing rain Saturday afternoon.

A prediction by Environment Canada that this could be a historic ice storm is coming true, with power outages being reported, risky driving conditions, fallen trees and cancelled flights. As the low gets closer, brisk northeasterly winds will pump in cold arctic air, forcing temperatures to fall to near or below the zero degree mark on Saturday.

As much as 12 cm of snow and ice pellets with a freezing rain chaser is the latest weekend weather forecast for Ottawa from Environment Canada. Thus an accumulation of ice is possible later on Saturday into Saturday night which will cause for some unsafe travel conditions.

Rain associated with this low will switch to freezing rain on Saturday morning, and will likely persist for a number of hours into Saturday evening.

"However, freezing rain will likely become widespread again".

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An area of rain and isolated thunderstorms is expected to affect extreme southwestern Ontario. That could cause power outages and tree damage there as well.

It's not exactly known when the precipitation will turn back to rain Sunday but 25 millimetres, it may exceed that in some locales, of ice is expected to build up across the area by morning.

The agency is warning the public to stay off the roads, as driving conditions are likely to become treacherous with the blast of wintery weather.

Hydro One says it has crews ready to respond to outages 24/7, and additional resources are on standby this weekend.

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