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Updated: 8th January 2019 18:30

Avoid Calgary's snow-clogged roads: AMA

The big dump of snow Calgarians awoke to Monday morning has the Alberta Motor Association urging drivers to stay off the roads.

Calgarians awoke to a big dose of winter in time for the Monday morning commute. ((Monty Kruger/CBC))The big dump of snow Calgarians awoke to Monday morning prompted the Alberta Motor Association to urge drivers to stay off the roads.

Slippery streets and reduced visibility made the drive to work harrowing for many motorists, as city crews struggled to get major routes sanded and plowed after about 10 centimetres fell overnight.

Another 10 centimetres was expected to fall before the snow ends later Monday.

AMA spokesman Don Szarko said maintenance crews were scrambling to keep up with the calls from stranded drivers.

"So, right now around Calgary and area, we're looking at around, you know, two hours for pretty much all services — for towing and winching, a little less for light servicing," he said.

About 10 centimetres of snow fell in the Calgary by ealry Monday morning. ((CBC))Szarko reminded motorists to make sure their gas tanks are topped up, cellphones charged and to have a warm blanket and some food and water in their cars in case they get stranded.

"Our crews have been working non-stop since late last night," said Stephen Tauro, a spokesman for the city's transportation department. "We're working towards a smooth commute for the p.m."

Several city bus routes had been detoured because of poor road conditions, but according to the Calgary Transit website all buses were back to normal operations by late morning.

RCMP recommended motorists stay off Highway 1 east of Strathmore to Bassano because the route was in very poor condition.

Much of southwestern Alberta remained under a winter storm warning, from Jasper down to the U.S. border and as far east as Brooks, according to Environment Canada.

Meanwhile, drivers aren't the only ones affected by the wintry blast. All minor hockey games scheduled for Calgary on Monday have been cancelled because of the severe weather conditions.

Hockey Calgary has said it doesn't want to put families at risk, so the games will be entered as a tie for the relevant teams.

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