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Cold weather closes schools

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Wind chill warnings throughout most of the province – coupled with the huge natural gas pipeline explosion over the weekend -- has forced some school divisions to cancel classes this morning.

Schools are closed in the following divisions: Red River Valley, Lord Selkirk, Hanover, Interlake, Pine Creek, Garden Valley, Seine River, Prairie Rose, Evergreen, Border Land and Western.

In the Brandon school division, schools are open but no rural buses are running today.

Buses are also not running in the Park West and Beautiful Plains school divisions this morning. Classes will go on as regularly scheduled, with the exception of the Eden and Brookdale schools (closed for the day).

Meanwhile, the natural gas pipeline explosion approximately 50-kilometres south of Winnipeg over the weekend has forced closures in the surrounding area. Among those schools closed today include Providence University College and Seminary, Institute Collegial de St. Pierre, Ecole Heritage Immersion, Ecole St. Malo School, Real Berard and Sainte Agathe.

Weather-wise, Environment Canada says temperatures in Manitoba will be well below normal for the next couple days.

The forecast for Winnipeg and the surrounding area calls for clear skies and a high of -24 C today. The wind will be moderate northwest 20 km/h, forcing extreme wind chills in the -40 range. Tonight’s low is expected to dip down to -30 C.

Frostbite can occur is less than 10 minutes in extreme wind chill conditions.

Expect a similar forecast for Tuesday before things start to slowly warm up Wednesday.

The normal high and low for this time of year is -12 C and -22 C.

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