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Spring snow blasts the Prairies


Intense bands of snow could dump 30 or more cm on southern Alberta and Manitoba Monday and Tuesday
Intense bands of snow could dump 30 or more cm on southern Alberta and Manitoba Monday and Tuesday

Alexandra Pope, staff writer

March 21, 2011 — A low pressure system that moved in from the U.S. is sweeping across the Prairies and is packing quite a snowy punch.

The calendar says it's spring, but the weather says otherwise in the Prairies
The calendar says it's spring, but the weather says otherwise in the Prairies

More than 30 cm of snow is possible for parts of the southern Prairies through Wednesday as the moisture-filled system slides over the region.

For Alberta, the first in line to get hit by the system, the heaviest snow is expected to fall in the southeast, including Medicine Hat and Lethbridge.

The rest of Alberta should see “a slow build of precipitation that doesn't become too intense,” says Rob Davis, a meteorologist at The Weather Network.

On Monday, whiteout conditions were reported on the Highway 2 corridor between Edmonton and Calgary and some cars actually slid into the ditch.

By Monday night, a band of heavy snow will begin to move over southwestern Saskatchewan. Swift Current, Regina, and communities along the Trans-Canada Highway could see heavy snow overnight into Tuesday. Environment Canada cautions that strong easterly winds associated with this system mean blowing snow could be an issue on Tuesday. Drivers are advised to check highway conditions.

Manitoba will begin to see snow overnight on Monday, with snow intensifying Tuesday morning.

Davis cautions there's still a lot of uncertainty about how much snow southern Manitoba will see.

“The biggest question is how much snow Winnipeg will get,” he says. “They could get nothing more than a flurry, or they could get a double digit snowfall.”

He adds 30 cm is not out of the question for places like Brandon and the southwestern Trans-Canada corridor.

The Weather Network is keeping a close eye on this system. Stay up to date on conditions in your area by catching your local forecast on TV every 10 minutes on the 10s.

You can also sign up to receive weather warnings and public alerts on your mobile phone.

With files from Andrea Stockton

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