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Blowing snow warning in effect

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Louis Riel Day is going to be a windy, stormy one in Winnipeg.

Environment Canada has issued a blowing snow warning for the city Monday with winds gusting up to 70 km/h with periods of snow throughout the day. The temperature will fall to -19 C in the afternoon with a wind chill of -31.

Whiteouts closed the Trans Canada west of Winnipeg before 9 a.m. and Hwy 75 south to Morris even earlier than that and motorists are advised to check Manitoba road conditions before heading out anywhere.

Twitter meanwhile is buzzing with reports of the impacts: wind gusts shaking houses, zero visibility at the beaches of Lake Winnipeg.

Environment Canada warned things aren't getting any better.

"Of greater concern will be the strong northerly winds with this system. Northerly winds gusting to 60 or 70 km/h along with falling snow will produce widespread blowing snow through the Red River Valley today with poor visibilities especially in open areas," the weather warning read Monday.

Outside the city, the storm hit the Red River Valley the hardest.

"The worst conditions are expected over the Southern Red River Valley from Morris to Emerson where blizzard conditions are likely with visibility near zero. Visibilities should improve gradually this afternoon and into evening as winds gradually diminish. Motorists should be prepared for poor driving conditions across the Red River Valley and Southeast Manitoba", Environment Canada noted.

Things will get colder overnight as the sky clears and the mercury drops to -26 C. Winds will stay strong, gusting from 40-60 km/h.

Tuesday, the forecast calls for a sunny day with a high of -22 C and a wind chill of -40. Things warm up slightly Wednesday with a high of -17 C being predicted. Environment Canada is calling for warmer temperatures of -9 C Thursday and Friday.

History

Updated on Monday, February 18, 2013 at 10:48 AM CST: corrects typo

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