Saturday April 19, 2014





Storm catches region by surprise

Keith Anderson


Monday morning's commute could be a slippery as up to four centimetres of snow is forecast to blanket the region.

At least Monday's weather is expected, unlike the storm that took motorists, Kamloops Airport staff and even Environment Canada by surprise on Sunday.

Meteorologist Jennifer Hay said up to 4 cm is expected to fall in the city today - another five to 10 cm in the North Thompson - by the time the weather pattern dissipates late this morning.

Hay said Sunday's snowfall came out of nowhere, bringing with it heavy snowflakes that fell intensely for a couple of hours.

The storm was so intense forecasters issued a heavy snowfall warning for the North Thompson, where upwards of 10 cm did fall. The warning was called off by Sunday afternoon.

As much as 5 cm fell in the city, said Hay.

"It scared us for a couple of hours," she said. "We thought it could amount to a lot if it kept going."

Had Kamloops Airport manager Fred Legace known about the storm, he would have made sure two staff members were on snow-removal duty at Fulton Field on Sunday morning. He said extra help was brought in.

"This wasn't in the forecast. It certainly wasn't for us," he said.

No flights were delayed that morning, but there were a few late arrivals Sunday afternoon and evening. Legace said these were a result of weather elsewhere in the province and country.

"For Kamloops, it's an issue of other airports contributing to the delays," he said.

RCMP and firefighters responded to several minor accidents in and around the city on Sunday, with fog, ice and snow causing vehicles to slide off roads or into each other. No serious injuries were reported.

Up the North Thompson, Clearwater RCMP were dispatched to a vehicle down an embankment near Birch Island. Const. Ashton Phillips said the four occupants escaped unharmed.

The roads were slushy, not slippery, which made it difficult to change lanes, he said.

Hay said the forecast for the rest of the week calls for mild and cloudy weather.


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