Ottawa braces for vicious dose of winter weather

Ottawa braces for vicious dose of winter weather

Environment Canada issued an extreme cold warning and a winter storm warning for Ottawa on Saturday.

CTV Ottawa

Published Saturday, January 19, 2019 11:52AM EST

Last Updated Saturday, January 19, 2019 4:46PM EST

Bundle up, Ottawa. Or just stay inside, if you can. The deep freeze is upon us, and it’s not going to let up anytime soon.

An extreme cold warning was in effect for the capital on Saturday, with a period of cold temperatures and high winds expected for the day.

The temperature Saturday morning plummeted to -24 C, though it felt in the minus-30s with the wind chill.

The weather agency says wind chill values are expected to drop to near -35 C overnight Saturday and overnight Sunday, thanks to an arctic air mass moving into the region. Monday night will be almost as cold.

Frostbite can develop within minutes. The risks are greater for young children, older adults, people with chronic illnesses, people working or exercising outdoors, and those without proper shelter.

Ottawa Public Health upgraded their frostbite advisory to a frostbite warningSaturday afternoon. The agency issues a frostbite warning when a wind chill of -35 C or colder is forecast.

Snow is expected to blanket the region on Saturday, becoming heavier in the evening.

“The latest analysis is suggesting higher snowfall amounts than originally anticipated,” the weather agency writes in its warning.

Total snowfall amounts of 15 to 25 cm are looking increasingly likely, particularly for regions close to the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario.

High winds are also expected: northeast winds gusting to 60 km/h will develop Saturday evening and generate widespread blowing snow.

Environment Canada suggests postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve. Visibility on the roads will be suddenly reduced to near zero at times in heavy snow and blowing snow.

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