Records broken by temperatures as much as 10 C above normal
Published Monday, March 18, 2019 7:51AM PDT Last Updated Monday, March 18, 2019 6:51PM PDT
Double-digit temperatures are in the forecast for Metro Vancouver all week, and it’s possible some weather records could be broken for a second day in a row.
The high in Vancouver is forecast to be 14 C Monday. According to Environment Canada, the average high for March 18 in Vancouver is 10.2 C.
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Areas further east, like Abbotsford and Chilliwack, could see temperatures as high as 22.
"Temperatures upwards of 10 degrees above normal," meteorologist Matt MacDonald said.
"We're going to be breaking several records and a lot of these records date back to the last 100 years. So this is quite an exceptional little heat spell."
The warmer-than-usual forecast comes a day after temperature records were broken across B.C., including a 72-year-old record in Pitt Meadows.
A high of 19.5 on Sunday just beat the record first set in 1947 when the mercury climbed to 19.4.
Environment Canada said records were also broken in Victoria, where the high reached 15.8. In Whistler, the temperature reached 14.4, breaking the record set four years ago.
Squamish was Canada's hot spot on St. Patrick's Day at 21.3 C, breaking the record of 18 set in 1983.
Temperatures were also the highest they've been on March 17 in the following areas: Blue River, Fort Nelson, Mackenzie, Malahat, Nakusp, Port Hardy, Prince Rupert, Sechelt.
Many areas of the country are also seeing warm temperatures. Calgary has a high of 11 C in the forecast Monday and Environment Canada is forecasting a high of 4 C in Toronto.
Spring officially arrives on Wednesday afternoon.
The sunshine is a welcome change, especially given some areas of Metro Vancouver saw snow just a week ago, with residents already enduring the coldest February on record in the area.
It may be welcome news for many that MacDonald thinks it's safe to say winter is over. He said there's no chance of snow in the long-range forecast.
Patios and beaches were packed Sunday with people trying to take advantage of the weather.
On Monday, CTV News spoke to a family that had moved recently to Vancouver from Ottawa, where the high was around the freezing mark.
"This is basically a dream come true," Moira Rushton-Marovac said.
"We were just saying we don't even need to go to Mexico because this is basically tropical weather… Springtime is already here. We love it."
Patios and beaches were packed Sunday with people trying to take advantage of the weather. The timing is also good for many students as they enjoy the first days of spring break.
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However, with the weather getting warmer, rescue crews are warning those thinking of heading uphill of the risk of avalanche. In a post on Twitter, North Shore Rescue wrote, "With increasing temps comes increasing avalanche danger."
On Monday morning, the risk was high in the alpine and treeline areas.
Avalanche Canada warned the strong sun and warming temperatures are expected to destabilize the upper 20 to 30 centimeters of snow on South Coast mountains, and a natural avalanche cycle is very likely.
Deeper avalanches are also possible, the organization warned.
A driver had a close call over the weekend when their vehicle was caught in a "small natural avalanche" on Highway 1 east of Revelstoke.