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Another system drenches BC

Staff writers
April 3, 2012 — Another round of wet weather hit the south coast of BC Monday. Strong winds lead to power outages.

Additional rainfall expected through Tuesday
Additional rainfall expected through Tuesday

A powerful storm soaked much of the south coast late last week. Over 50 mm of rain fell through Thursday and winds gusting over 100 km/h also swept the region.

Another intense Pacific storm moved into the area on Monday and brought more rain and powerful winds to coastal regions.

Wind gusts reached 100 km/h in some places and over 20,000 hydro customers were without power Monday night.

The system has been spreading rain to Howe Sound as well and up to 50 mm is likely by the time all is said and done Tuesday afternoon.

Vancouver was forecast to pick up about 15 mm of rain with this most recent storm.

Coastal BC weather is dominated by local effects like winds and the topography
Coastal BC weather is dominated by local effects like winds and the topography

Much like most Pacific storms, the rainfall amounts in Vancouver are less than half of what places like Howe Sound and Squamish can expect.

"This is because south coastal BC weather is dominated by local effects, specifically the winds and the topography," explains Gina Ressler, another meteorologist at The Weather Network. "Vancouver and the lower mainland are actually relatively flat, but as those winds start to push up against the steep slope of the coastal mountains, the air is forced upwards and rising air generates precipitation." Ressler adds that the stronger the rising motion, the heavier the rain will be.

"This is compounded when you get into Howe Sound by the shape of the inlet, so as those winds blow from the south into the inlet they tend to get channeled. The rising air and converging moisture brings more rainfall than other places."

This same system will also bring up to 40 cm of snow to Whistler through Tuesday, so extra travel time is recommended for anyone heading there.

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