Snow and cold is part of our national identity

Snow and cold is part of our national identity

When Islanders comment on snow and cold, the rest of Canada returns a chilled laugh

As Canadians, living with the cold is part of our identity. When viewed under a microscope, Canadian DNA is actually made up of tiny snowflakes and icicles.

We often don’t get a lot of snow in the Fraser Valley usually, but when we do it’s big news.

On Monday, snow coated the streets of the Lower Mainland. Temperatures plummeted. Motor vehicle incidents were so common, responders couldn’t keep up. It was chaos.

But the snow didn’t stop – it kept coming through to Wednesday. School was cancelled, many services were curtailed, even the Prime Minister’s trip to visit Premier John Horgan was cancelled. The Ministry of Transportation put out a notice Wednesday urging residents to avoid travel unless it was essential.

When Lower Mainland residents comment on snow and cold, the rest of Canada returns a chilled laugh. “But our cold is worse because it’s a ‘wet cold.’” Other Canadians will say they’d take the ‘wet cold’ over -40 C any day.

Although snow and cold on the west coast is less severe than the rest of the country, it still creates dangerous situations. The west coast has something that much of Canada does not: elevation changes, and steep roads. On top of that, the west coast has a higher likelihood of drivers unequipped for winter weather. All drivers should have winter tires, or snow-certified all-season tires, but we all know someone who still has summer tires on.

The west coast also deals with a lack of snow clearing infrastructure. In 2020, the City of Saskatoon had a snow removal budget of $14 million. The City of Vancouver has a total budget of just over $7 million. Snow removal budgets for west coast municipalities are increasing after years of significant snowfall. Still, many municipalities have snow removal priorities and residents in low priority areas can be stuck in their homes.

Snow and cold is something all Canadians deal with. We all love to play it in, complain about it, and hate to drive in it. Regardless of what kind of snow and cold Canadians experience, what’s important is that we all stay safe, and make sure we’re properly equipped to deal with it – while it lasts.

– Black Press Media

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Bhagwan Mayer. (Photo submitted)
Organizer of transporting the World’s Largest Hockey Stick to Cowichan remembered

Bhagwan Mayer a “hard-working fellow who cared about his community.”

Pnina Benyamini strikes a yoga pose. (Photo submitted)
Many facets to energetic woman’s legacy

Benyamini taught yoga, belly dancing and more to an adoring public

FILE – British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry wears a face mask as she views the Murals of Gratitude exhibition in Vancouver, on Friday, July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Masks now mandatory in all public indoor and retail spaces in B.C.

Many retailers and businesses had voiced their frustration with a lack of mask mandate before

Island Health’s acting medical health officer for the central Island says schools are very safe, even after COVID-19 exposure at five schools in Nanaimo-Ladysmith this month. (File photo)
Nanaimo-Ladysmith and Qualicum superintendents ask Island Health about COVID-19 safety at schools

Central Island medical health officer answers questions parents have been asking

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. daily COVID-19 cases hits record 941 on Tuesday

Further restrictions on indoor exercise take effect

Man, 28, warned by Kootenay police to stop asking people to marry him

A woman initially reported the incident to police before they discovered others had been popped the question

Winston Blackmore (left) and James Oler (right) were sentenced on separate charges of polygamy this week in Cranbrook Supreme Court.
No more charges expected in Bountiful investigation, special prosecutor says

Special prosecutor says mandate has ended following review of evidence from Bountiful investigations

(Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Refuse to follow B.C.’s mask mandate? Face a $230 fine

Masks are now required to be worn by all British Columbians, 12 years and older

Parksville’s French Creek Harbour experienced a diesel spill on Nov. 23 after a barge and fishing vessel collided. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Coast Guard cleans up diesel spill in Parksville’s French Creek Harbour

Barge carrying fuel truck collides with fishing vessel

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Teachers' Federation President Teri Mooring is asking parents of school-aged children to encourage the wearing of masks when possible in schools. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
LETTER: Teachers union encourages culture of mask wearing in B.C. schools

BCTF President Teri Mooring asks parents to talk with children about wearing masks in school

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s inability to manufacture vaccines in-house will delay distribution: Trudeau

First doses of COVID-19 vaccine expected in first few months of 2021, prime minister says

Stock photo
Senior from Gibsons caught viewing child porn sentenced to 10 months

74-year-old pleaded guilty after police seized 1,500-2,500 images

Most Read