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UPDATE: Freezing rain, snow wreaking havoc on highways across B.C.’s interior

Highways 97, 20, 24, 26 and 5 all have travel advisories
Update 8 a.m.:
There is a vehicle incident on Highway 97 between Emerald Crescent and Felker Street for 5.2 km (28 to 22 km north of 100 Mile House) impacting southbound traffic. Travellers should expect single lane alternating traffic.
A special weather statement has been replaced with a freezing rain warning for the Cariboo Chilcotin and North Thompson regions Thursday, Nov. 2.
Environment Canada issued the warning at 5:45 a.m., cautioning of slippery and icy surfaces due to freezing rain and possible power outages due to ice buildup.
“A warm front associated with a low pressure system is moving into the B.C. interior today. As warm air aloft moves over the existing cold air, freezing rain will develop,” notes the warning.
“Freezing rain will end or change to rain late this morning to this afternoon as the cold air erodes.”
Heavy rain was falling over Williams Lake at 6:45 a.m., with snow being reported at higher elevations. The daytime high is expected to reach 4C Thursday in the lakecity. There were no power outages in the region as of 6:45 a.m.
Surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots may become icy and slippery. Ice build-up may cause tree branches to break. Utility outages may occur.
Be prepared to adjust your driving with changing road conditions.
There are several highway alerts in the region to consider: Highway 97 from Clinton to 100 Mile House, Coquihalla Highway from Hope to Merritt and the Coquihalla Highway from Merritt to Kamloops.
There is also a travel advisory in effect for Highway 20 west of Williams Lake to Anahim Lake, 317 km, due to freezing rain and snow, as much as 15 cm.
A traveller in the area said Sheep Creek hill just west of Williams Lake “is a sheet of ice.”
At 7:30 a.m. the school district announced the bus servicing Alexis Creek is not running due to road conditions.
There is also a travel advisory in place for Highway 24 from Lone Butte to Little Fort due to a “significant freezing rain event,” notes DriveBC.
West of Quesnel, there is a travel advisory for Highway 26, the Barkerville Highway, also for freezing rain and snow.
A travel advisory remains in effect for a long section of Highway 97, stretching from Cache Creek all the way to Prince George.
All of the advisories note that travellers should expect winter driving conditions and consider alternative travel plans.



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