Winter storm Friday

Environment Canada has issued a winter storm warning for Friday. Here are the details of what to expect for most of Southern Ontario, including Grand Bend area:

This is a warning that dangerous winter weather conditions are imminent or occurring in these regions. Monitor weather conditions.. Listen for updated statements.

Snow heavy at times is expected across all of southern and eastern Ontario with a possibility of freezing rain and ice pellets along lakes Erie and Ontario on Friday.

A low pressure area over Arkansas is getting organized and setting its sights on southern Ontario. As the low moves east across the southern states then curves northeast towards the Ohio Valley tonight it is expected to tap into a lot of moisture and energy from the gulf of Mexico. As a result it is likely that this low will intensify into a significant winter storm as it moves into southern Ontario later tonight and Friday.

Latest indications show the potential for significant amounts of snow from this deepening low as it tracks northeast just south of lakes Erie and Ontario towards New England by Saturday. This type of winter storm often has a swath of 15 to 30 centimetres of heavy snow associated with it. Freezing rain and ice pellets will also be a problem as the storm centre gets close to the lower Great Lakes. If the storm tracks slightly further north an increase in the duration of ice pellets could significantly lower snowfall amounts especially near lakes Erie and Ontario.

The leading edge of the snow is expected to reach the Windsor and Sarnia areas Thursday night then spread rapidly northeast across the remainder of the district reaching the Ottawa area Friday morning. Latest analyses suggest the heaviest snow swath may extend from Lake St Clair northeast across the London Kitchener and Golden Horseshoe areas into eastern Ontario including the national Capital region Friday. Ice pellets and freezing rain may also be an issue to contend with generally in regions near and southeast of highway 401. Exact snowfall amounts and the location of ice pellets and freezing rain will depend upon the exact track of this developing storm. It is also possible if the storm centre tracks further north than expected that there could be a changeover to rain Friday especially in areas near eastern Lake Erie and over Prince Edward county.

Travellers should be prepared to alter plans accordingly again as driving conditions once again will deteriorate significantly on Friday.

This storm has the potential to be quite significant and have high impact especially if heavy snow develops.

Please refer to the latest public forecasts for further details.