Massive Blizzard on March 4, 1966 Shut Down Winnipeg

Winnipeg Blizzard 1966
Winnipeg Blizzard 1966 Remember the

On March 4th, 1966, Winnipeg, Manitoba experienced one of the worst blizzards in its history. The storm caused chaos across the city, with residents stranded in their homes and cars, businesses forced to close, and emergency services stretched to their limits.

The blizzard was caused by a combination of cold air from the Arctic meeting warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico. As the two air masses collided, they created a powerful storm system that brought heavy snowfall and strong winds to the city.

The snowfall began early in the morning on March 4th and quickly intensified, with visibility dropping to almost zero. The wind gusts reached up to 70 km/h, causing snowdrifts up to 6 meters high in some areas.

Roads quickly became impassable, and many cars were abandoned in the middle of the streets. Drivers who attempted to navigate the treacherous conditions found themselves stranded, often without enough fuel or warm clothing to survive the night.

Emergency services were overwhelmed, with fire and police departments responding to hundreds of calls for assistance. Many hospitals also struggled to cope, as patients and staff members were unable to get to the facilities.

Despite the chaos and destruction caused by the storm, there were also many examples of bravery and resilience. Neighbors helped each other shovel out their driveways and shared food and supplies. Emergency responders worked tirelessly to rescue those in need and clear the roads. And many businesses and organizations stepped up to provide shelter and support to those affected by the storm.

Radio station CJOB remained live on the air. Peter Warren host of the talk show “Warren on the Action Line” was key in many ways connecting people with the help they needed.

In the days following the blizzard, Winnipeg began to recover. The snow was eventually cleared from the streets, and many damaged buildings were repaired. The city also learned important lessons about emergency preparedness and the need to be ready for unexpected weather events.

Today, the March 4th, 1966 blizzard remains a defining moment in Winnipeg’s history, remembered both for the chaos it caused and for the strength and resilience of its residents.

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