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‘Potent and impactful’ rain, wind, snow and high tides converging on B.C.

Coastal, southern B.C. face weather warnings with incoming ‘atmospheric river’

Drenching rain, heavy snow, strong winds and high tides are converging on coastal and southern British Columbia.

Warnings have been issued for most of southwestern B.C. where a “potent and impactful” atmospheric river is set to make landfall, with as much as 150 millimetres of rain predicted for Western Vancouver Island.

The Ministry of Transportation says it will close a 20-kilometre stretch of Highway 1 south of Lytton starting Monday night through to Tuesday as a the area is assessed for the danger of heavy rain on wildfire damaged slopes along the route.

Inland Vancouver Island, the Howe Sound region and parts of Metro Vancouver, including the North Shore, Coquitlam and Maple Ridge, are expecting up to 100 millimetres of rain.

In Greater Victoria and Metro Vancouver, Environment Canada is also forecasting high tides exceeding normal levels that may cause minor coastal flooding to exposed shorelines.

From northern Vancouver Island to Prince Rupert and Haida Gwaii, winds gusting up to 120 kilometres are expected to end by this afternoon.

The province’s River Forecast Centre has issued high streamflow advisories for the entire southwestern region of British Columbia, encompassing all of Vancouver Island, the Lower Mainland and the south coast.

The “atmospheric river” is also expected to hit the southern Kootenay region in B.C.’s Interior, with the Elk Valley near Fernie and parts of Highway 3 expecting up to 100 millimetres of rain starting late Monday and lasting until Thursday.

Environment Canada is telling drivers on the Sea to Sky Highway from Squamish to Whistler and the Coquihalla Highway from Hope to Merritt that heavy rains will raise the risk of flooding and landslides along the routes.

It has also issued a winter storm warning for the Trans-Canada Highway from Sicamous to Golden, with up to 15 centimetres of snow expected along with ice pellets and the possibility of freezing rain.

Black Press Media spoke with meteorologist Alyssa Charbonneau from Environment Canada about the winter weather advisory that have been issued for Rogers Pass and the Yoho Park areas.

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