The mercury may be higher this afternoon than what the Okanagan has seen in recent weeks, but the B.C. highway system is not out of the woods just yet.
Environment Canada ended a special weather statement and freezing rain warning for the Okanagan at 2p.m. on Dec. 26, after it went into effect earlier in the morning.
Flooding is now the big issue on main thoroughfares, including the Okanagan Connector as well as the Coquihalla Highway, as temperatures go above the freezing mark.
⚠️Be aware of pooling water due to rising temperatures and rainfall throughout the region. Please reduce speeds when travelling on the freeways. Crews are working hard to remove snow to allow water to drain. @DriveBC ⚠️ pic.twitter.com/odr3oYMHNk— YRB Nicola Ltd (@YRBNicola) December 26, 2022
Despite the warmer weather, higher altitudes along the highway system will still be privy to some possible heavy snowfall this evening. The ‘Coquihalla Protocol’ is set to go into effect tonight along Hwy. 5, which is a series of steps taken when heavy snow is expected, with a forecast of 10-20cm of snow along with freezing rain.
Though the warning for the Okanagan Connector has ended, freezing rain is still a possibility into this evening, with Environment Canada also predicting up to 10cm of snow.
Drivers are being cautioned to take the mountain routes only if necessary, after a particularly dangerous holiday weekend including a quadruple fatality in a single-vehicle Ebus crash on Christmas Eve.