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Snow squalls with up to 35 cm of snow expected across central Ontario

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The first significant snow storms of the season are expected later today through Tuesday across central and northern Ontario.

Environment Canada is calling for local accumulations of 20 to 35 centimetres, with isolated higher amounts possible in Barrie, Orillia, Midland, Dufferin, Innisfil, York, Grey and Bruce counties, Parry Sound and the Muskoka, region.

It says intense snowfall rates possibly exceeding 5 centimetres per hour at times.

Visibility will be abysmal at times in heavy snow and blowing snow.

"Snowfall amounts will be highly variable as the lake effect bands will likely meander. However, if they lock in, some locations may receive significantly higher amounts," a press release from Environment Canada states, adding, "Strong westerly winds followed by northwesterly winds will accompany these snow squalls resulting in significantly reduced visibility at times in heavy snow and blowing snow."

Visibility will be suddenly reduced to near zero at times in heavy snow and blowing snow. Rapidly accumulating snow could make travel difficult in some locations.

Road closures are possible.

The national weather agency advises motorists to consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve.

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