A warmer than average winter expected, when will snow start flying?

A warmer than average season is what’s anticipated for the first few months of this upcoming winter, but, that’s not to say snow will be absent.

Frost was in the forecast early Monday, but Environment and Climate Change Canada Meteorologist Steven Flisfeder predicts snow won’t start falling in Windsor-Essex until mid-November.

“We might make it through October with no snow fall,” says Flisfeder. “But once we get into early November, we see temperatures starting to dip below that freezing mark.”

Flisfeder says warmer temperatures during winter months can lead to an increase in lake effect snow across Southwestern Ontario.

“Areas near Lake St. Clair, Lake Erie, if they get the right winds associated with the storm they could get some higher than normal snowfalls through the early winter,” he says.

In Chatham-Kent, council will discuss letting the public name six of its snowplow fleet ahead of the first snowfall.

Officials there say the plows cover upwards of 3500km of roads, about the same distance between Toronto and Calgary.

Counc. Trevor Thompson tells CTV News six plows would be named by the community through Let’s Talk Chatham-Kent and a partnership with Winmar, noting a committee will weed out more questionable name suggestions.

“You would be surprised how personal people take their snowplows," he says. "People track snowplows online, they look for when the last time the plow was down their road. They know their plow drivers as well, so I think it’s a fun opportunity to take some ownership in a snow plow that’s travelling up and down your road.”

Thompson says winter weather in Chatham-Kent is variable, noting the Banana Belt doesn’t see as much snow as other communities further north.

“When the snow does come, it comes pretty hard and pretty heavy," he says. 

Flisfeder says snow can definitely be expected, but how much isn’t as clear.

“There’s a general consensus amongst all the guidance that the November throughout January time period should be above normal,” Flisfeder explains. “The precipitation side, we’re not too clear on how it’s going to be rolling out through this winter. All the guidance hasn’t given us a clear indicator.”

Last year, the first significant snowfall in Windsor-Essex came on December 1.