Black ice causes emergency calls to surge in Montreal and Laval

The freezing rain precipitation on Wednesday evening and Thursday night caused more frequent use of ambulance services in Montreal and Laval.

On Thursday morning, Urgences-santé reported that a large number of emergency calls had been transmitted in the two territories.

Environment Canada announced Wednesday that between five and ten millimeters of ice would accumulate on the ground due to precipitation. Surfaces were icy and very slippery almost everywhere in Montreal and Laval on Thursday morning, even though the freezing rain had stopped falling.

On social networks, Urgences-santé asked the population to prioritize calls to 811 for health advice and to dial 911 if a life is in danger.

She asked people who see a person falling to the ground because of the ice to check if they can get up. If you are unable to get back to your feet, a call to emergency services may be necessary.

Urgences-santé sent a message like this two weeks ago, on January 11, when bad weather made the roads slippery. A high call volume was observed that day.

Environment Canada said the freezing precipitation was expected to end Thursday morning, but the respite could be short-lived. Indeed, freezing drizzle should fall in the Montreal region late Friday night and freezing rain should follow.

Thursday morning, however, the federal agency had not reported the expected number of millimeters of ice.

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