'Potentially historic' ice storm expected to hit southern Ontario; closures in effect

Potential for freezing rain Thursday, ice storm this weekend

Environment Canada is warning an ice storm is likely to hit Hamilton, Burlington and Niagara this weekend, bringing with it freezing rain and ice pellets.

Earlier this week, Environment Canada issued a special weather statement warning of a potential ice storm for parts of southern Ontario on Saturday and Sunday.

The combination of ice accumulation and strong winds may result in power outages due to fallen tree limbs and power lines.

Environment Canada says the temperature will fall below the freezing mark Saturday and rain will change over into freezing rain possibly mixed with ice pellets at times in the afternoon lasting into the evening. Thus an accumulation of ice is possible later on Saturday into Saturday night which will cause for some unsafe travel conditions. "A few rounds of precipitation are likely during this period with a significant threat of prolonged freezing rain in some areas".

In the Greater Toronto Area, the weather agency predicts that there could be ice buildup of about 15 millimetres, noting that ice pellets are also likely.

"Some people may think that it's just wet roads, not realizing that it's freezing rain coming down", Schmidt added.

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App users: Maps show zones of rain, freezing rain and snow Saturday and Sunday.

A nasty mix of rain, snow and freezing rain is the weekend forecast and what you get will all depend on where you live.

An area of rain and isolated thunderstorms is expected to affect extreme southwestern Ontario.

Due to the icy weather conditions, both the Peel District School Board and Dufferin Peel Catholic District School Board have cancelled permits and weekend programs, including worldwide language programs, and continuing/adult education classes for both Saturday, April 14 and Sunday, April 15. Extended and widespread utility outages are possible.

"We're ready to respond 24/7", Hydro One said in a tweet.

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