Eastern Newfoundland begins digging after severe winter storm

Snow clearing squads are hard at work in eastern Newfoundland on Wednesday.  (Garrett Barry/CBC - photo credit)

Snow clearing squads are hard at work in eastern Newfoundland on Wednesday. (Garrett Barry/CBC – photo credit)

High winds and blowing snow still affected visibility on Wednesday morning as the tail end of a snowstorm blew through parts of Newfoundland and caused cancellations.

The English school district of Newfoundland and Labrador called just before 6 a.m. to keep all schools in the St. John’s metropolitan area closed for the morning. Several schools in the Bonavista Peninsula and central Newfoundland have either closed or been earmarked for delayed openings. Most of them remained closed for the day, with the exception of a handful in central Newfoundland, which opened with a delay.

All flights to and from St John’s were also canceled on Wednesday morning, but activity at the airport was due to resume in the afternoon.

“Snow removal crews are working around the clock as we clean up from this weather event,” Lynnann Winsor, the City of St. John’s assistant city manager for public works, said Wednesday afternoon.

“Tonight at 9:30 p.m. we will have a first pass for all streets in St. John’s and tomorrow morning by 9:30 a.m. we will have all streets widened.”

Metrobus sent out a notice that the bus routes would not start on time, and later said service would begin at 10:30 am

Noting that the 24-hour parking ban is still in effect, Winsor reminded residents to keep their vehicles off the streets while crews clear and widen the streets.

Garbage pickup will begin again Thursday for the areas missing Tuesday and Wednesday amid the storm. Friday’s garbage pickup will include areas scheduled for Thursday, and Friday’s regular schedule will be moved to Saturday, she said.

Dan Arsenault/CBC

Dan Arsenault/CBC

Those who depend on the city’s sidewalks will have to wait a few days for them to be cleared. Winsor said the city’s standard schedule for sidewalk cleaning is four to seven days after the snowfall.

“The standard pavement equipment is not like the pavement equipment. It’s basically like a ride-on snowblower, so it takes time and the snow can be higher than the equipment and then it takes longer.”

By Wednesday morning, about 40 centimeters had fallen in much of the eastern and southern regions, and about 24 in Gander. Winds were still strong on Wednesday morning, with peak gusts reaching between 80 and 110 km/h.

Other notable closures:

  • All courts in St. John’s were closed in the morning but were due to reopen in the afternoon.

  • Eastern Health’s breastfeeding support groups have canceled for the morning.

  • Mundy Pond Walk-in Clinic closed for the morning.

  • Door advice is online or by phone for the day.

  • CNA Seal Cove campus closes at 11:00 am in the morning

  • The CNA Clarenville campus closes at 10:30 am in the morning

  • CNA Placentia campus is closed all day.

  • The Association For New Canadians offices in St. John’s have been moved to 1 p.m

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