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Schools in Southeastern Manitoba have been closed for the day due to a developing blizzard.

The Hanover, Seine River, Red River Valley, Border Land School and Sunrise Divisions have cancelled classes and closed schools as has Steinbach Christian School.

DSFM has cancelled classes at Sainte Agathe, Saint-Jean Baptise, Lagimodière, Réal-Bérard, Gabrielle-Roy, Saint-Joachim, Pointe-des-Chênes.

For a complete list of cancellations, go to the Cancellations page.

Environment Canada says a blizzard will develop this morning in southeastern Manitoba and end in the afternoon.

The weather office says we have received about two centimetres of snow in Steinbach with another 5 expected. Larger amounts are forecast to the southeast of Steinbach. Meteorologist Natalie Hasell says winds will gust up to 80km/h, causing blowing snow and reduced visibility. She adds the strong winds will continue well into the evening Thursday.

Hasell says a blizzard warning is issued when winds of 40 kilometres per hour or greater cause widespread reductions in visibility, typically 400 metres or less, caused by blowing snow or fresh falling snow. She adds the storm must also last at least four hours.

She notes we are only getting the edge of large system that will mostly impact our neighbours south of the border.

"This is a rather large Colorado low," Hasell explains, "our partners at National Weather Service in the U.S. are describing this storm as massive and historic in some of their briefing material so it kind of gives you an idea of what they will be experiencing."

Most of South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota are expected to get up to 50cm of snow from this system, along with winds stronger than they will be here.

Hasell advises caution while out driving in blizzard conditions and encourages motorists to assess the weather before they go out. She adds if you must drive, be prepared and do not wander away from your vehicle.

 

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