One killed on snowy roads that made mess of morning commute, triggering nearly 100 accidents
Graham Hughes, Ottawa CitizenPublished: Thursday, February 07, 2008
The latest bout of snow and blowing snow that hit the area just before rush hour Thursday morning has claimed one life in the Outaouais - and sent cars and trucks into medians and ditches across Eastern Ontario and West Quebec.
One man is dead following a head-on collision between a pickup truck and a mini bus on Highway 105, in Chelsea. Snow and slippery roads are considered the main cause of the crash, about 20 kilometres north of Gatineau, said Const. Martin Fournel of the MRC des Collines police.
Neither the female driver of the southbound bus or the patient she was taking to hospital in Gatineau for medical tests were injured in the collision just before 7 a.m.
One vehicle rolled Thursday on the Ottawa River Parkway at Island Park Drive.
Pat McGrath, The Ottawa Citizen
Hwy. 105 was closed in the Farm-Point area and will remain closed for some time while police investigate.
The Ontario Provincial Police reported 81 traffic incidents in the area between 5 and 10 a.m. No major injuries were reported. In one incident, a MacEwen Petroleum tanker truck loaded with diesel fuel rolled into the ditch on Country Road 34, north of Alexandria.
Crews were dispatched to deal with fuel reported leaking from two of the truck's four compartments. Ottawa police said there were many accidents throughout the city, but no major injuries. School boards to the south of the Ottawa area cancelled bus service because of the storm.
Some flights at the Ottawa airport were delayed or cancelled, largely because of the situation at Toronto airport which was dealing with the aftermath of two storms that dumped more than 30 centimetres of snow on Toronto and area.
Travellers are advised to check with their airlines before going to the airport. In a special weather statement issued at 8:40 a.m., Environment Canada warned that residents of Brockville - Leeds and Grenville, the City of Ottawa, Gatineau, Prescott and Russell and Cornwall to Morrisburg faced near zero visibility due to blowing snow and periods of heavy heavy snow through the morning.
"The storm is gradually moving off to the east, said Geoff Coulson, a warning preparedness meteorologist at Environment Canada.
"But its departure is somewhat slow, so we could easily see, in and around the Ottawa area, up to 15 centimetres before this thing starts to weaken and pull away by this afternoon."
Some areas could see more than the 15 centimetres, he added. No snow is predicted for Friday, although there will be "light snowfall on the weekend, followed by a cold spell at the binning of the week, with Monday expected to be sunny with a high of -9C.