Winds, snow, squalls and high waves on the way for Midwestern Ontario

A low pressure system is tracking across the Great Lakes bringing another strong wind event to the Lake Huron shoreline Friday, and will likely lead to snowsqualls in parts of the region Thursday night.

Both the Ausable Bayfield and Maitland Valley Conservation Authorities have issued a Shoreline Condition Statement.

Northwest winds with sustained speeds of 45-50 km/hr and peak gusts of 65-75 km/hr will begin early tomorrow morning and continue until late Friday night.

The strong, sustained northwest winds will produce maximum wave heights of 3-4m. Wave action is expected to reach farther up the shoreline than the event experienced this past Monday. Widespread erosion of both beaches and the lakeshore bluff will continue, adding to the heightened risk of bluff failures. Flooding is also expected in low-lying coastal areas.

Residents and municipal officials are reminded to stay well back from breaking waves. In addition, people should stay away from top-of-bluff areas during and after the storm in case there has been any movement of the lake bank. It is important to remember that there may be a delay between erosion at the toe (bottom) of the bluff and subsequent bluff failure.

Meantime a snowsquall watch is in effect for Southern Huron and Northern Grey Counties. Periods of rain will change over to snow late this evening as cold air floods into the region. Snow squalls off of Lake Huron and Georgian Bay will develop and as a result, locally 10 to 15 cm of snow may fall.  Snow squalls will weaken by Friday afternoon or evening. Travel may be hazardous due to sudden changes in the weather. Visibility may be suddenly reduced at times in heavy snow.

A Winter weather travel advisory is in effect for Northern Bruce, Southern Grey, Southern Bruce, Southern Perth and Northern Huron Counties. Periods of rain will change over to snow late this evening as cold air floods into the region. Lake effect snow off of Lake Huron and Georgian Bay will develop and as a result, locally 5 to 10 cm of snow may fall. Falling temperatures and accumulating snow will lead to icy and hazardous road conditions.