In December of 2010, people in southwestern Ontario learned what can happen when cold air meets warm water and the wind blows just right.
A series of snow squalls pummeled the region for three straight days beginning on December 6, with the communities of London and Lucan taking an especially hard hit.
In Lucan, snow fell for 102 hours that week. By the time all was said and done, about 180 cm of snow had accumulated.
There wasn't as much snow in London, but a significant 95 cm buried the city over the course of 3 days. At one point, the entire city came to a halt, and Mayor Joe Fontana declared a state of emergency.
Residents were asked to stay home from work and school. Exams at the University of Western Ontario and Fanshawe College were cancelled, as well.
The snow and slush made for slippery driving conditions that week on major highways, including the 401. Visibility was poor, as well. The O.P.P. responded to hundreds of accidents.
“What this storm did, is remind us that we need to be prepared for when the weather turns nasty,” Inspector Mark Wright, with the Western Region O.P.P., told The Weather Network last December. “It's safe to say that this storm caught many drivers off guard. Our officers investigated a total of 512 motor vehicle collisions since the onset of this storm.”
Still, it wasn't just the southwestern part of Ontario that took a beating from the squalls that week. Significant snowfall accumulations were also reported north of the city of Toronto. More than 105 cm fell in Beeton, 83 cm fell in Alliston, and Thorbury reported 61 cm. Barrie also got some impressive amounts of snow, with about 30 cm blanketing roadways.
Wondering what to expect this winter? Check out The Weather Network's Winter Outlook 2011/2012.