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Canada CAA Sask gets 3,000 calls for assistance during cold snap

18:07  17 january  2020
18:07  17 january  2020 Source:   thestarphoenix.com

Alberta's extreme cold cracks a city LRT line, boosts calls to AMA

  Alberta's extreme cold cracks a city LRT line, boosts calls to AMA Record-smashing cold temperatures cracked a rail on an Edmonton’s transit line causing delays for Tuesday morning commuters in the city’s south end.The cracked rail caused delays to morning commuters on the city's south end Tuesday morning, joining dead batteries and surreal views caused by ice fog as the deep freeze continues.

The extreme cold snap currently gripping most of the country has hit Ontario hard and with it, caused a significantly higher-than-normal call volume for CAA CAA continues to work 24/7 to assist Members who have requested service. Our Roadside Assistance operators are working at full capacity to get

In Guelph, CAA responded to 141 calls on Wednesday, 62 as of noon Thursday and they were predicting another 181 calls for Thursday. The Canadian Automobile Association ( CAA ) says it is seeing a spike in calls for service during the cold snap in south-central Ontario this week.

a person standing in front of a sunset:  Dogs and humans brave the extreme cold at Avalon Dog Park in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, January 16, 2020. © Liam Richards Dogs and humans brave the extreme cold at Avalon Dog Park in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, January 16, 2020.

Frigid temperatures in Saskatchewan have led to many dead vehicle batteries, flat tires and requests to be pulled out of the snow. The wait for those services could be hours.

“This is ‘be kind to your vehicle’ week. You are going to want to check everything: battery, tires, oil, whatever it takes to keep your vehicle in working condition,” said CAA Saskatchewan spokeswoman Christine Niemczyk.

 Kitt Willey kicks up a wall of snow while clearing sidewalks in downtown Saskatoon. (Matt Smith / Saskatoon StarPhoenix) © Matt Smith Kitt Willey kicks up a wall of snow while clearing sidewalks in downtown Saskatoon. (Matt Smith / Saskatoon StarPhoenix)

On Wednesday, CAA Roadside Assistance in Saskatchewan received 3,000 calls for help; on a regular day, the usual number is around 200. Drivers were waiting two to three hours for a boost in Saskatoon before 7 a.m. on Wednesday. CAA was not giving estimated wait times as staff worked to keep up with the demand.

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September’s cooler air is already among us and cottage owners will soon be thinking about putting their vacation homes in hibernation. For cottage owners’ peace of mind and property safety, here are some essential tips from CAA Insurance.*

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“It really is an all hands on deck situation,” Niemczyk said, noting staff are putting in long hours, taking double shifts and coming in on their days off.

CAA handles the calls as they are received, but people stranded in emergency situations get priority. If something happens and they need help, drivers should “make sure you are in a safe place, and you are not in danger,” she said.

The ongoing cold has set a new record for natural gas usage in the province. A SaskEnergy release said daily consumption has surpassed the record twice this week, breaking a record that was first set in December 2018 and matched during the February 2019 cold snap.

The record days are happening more frequently because of customer growth, the release noted.

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Call CAA to become a member today! Get Roadside Assistance View Estimated Wait Times. 6 Bike Assist counts as one of your allotted roadside calls during your membership year. Service will be provided to cyclists where there is permitted vehicle access, and based on seasonal availability.

CAA Travel Insurance has multiple trip duration options that will cover you no matter how many times you travel. A Canadian not covered by a government health insurance plan. CAA Assistance . CAA Travel Insurance does not cover: A sickness, injury or related condition during a trip undertaken

The deep freeze continues to make hypothermia a major concern for paramedics responding to calls involving patients who have been exposed to the weather, said Medavie Health Services West spokesman Troy Davies. Ambulance teams have been responding to one or two calls per shift for people with cold exposure or slips and falls.

While extreme cold warnings have been issued for the entire province, no temperature records have been broken, noted David Phillips, senior climatologist for Environment and Climate Change Canada.

“It was worse last year,” he said, but added it has been colder than normal lately. Usually at this time of year the lows are around -20 C and the highs are -10 C — nearly a 20-degree difference from this week’s -38.9 C.

This cold spell comes in the dead of winter, when statistically it should be the coldest moment, Phillips said.

“I always think it’s time to celebrate because it means there is more winter behind you than ahead of you.”

Weather models are showing uncertainty for the coming months, but over the next week things are expected to warm up. By Tuesday, temperatures should be around 6 degrees warmer than normal, with -4 C for a high, Phillips said.

“It will feel tropical come early next week.”

Related

Hello, 911, is a potato a weapon?: Sask. RCMP releases annual list of worst 'emergency' calls .
One person called 911 to report that their fiance was not helping with wedding planning. Other highlights included: Someone reporting that their "personal intimate device" had been taken, but that the thief had left the container behind.A person inquiring whether throwing a pickle at someone would get them arrested. Someone asking 911 to pick up their medication because they could not reach their pharmacy over the telephone. A woman who called 911 and asked them to come help her reach something from the top shelf in her home. One person found a "quite large insect" in their toilet.

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