Ottawa has smashed the record for warm weather, today, hitting a balmy 11 degrees Celsius.

Previously, the warmest January 30th in Ottawa history was in 1974 with a temperature of 5.6 degrees.

The drastic change in temperature from last week’s deep freeze has left many people reaching for their umbrellas.

The National Capital Commission was also busy trying to preserve its attractions for the opening of Winterlude , this weekend.

Ice sculptures at Confederation Park are covered in thermal blankets. Winterlude’s main attraction – the Rideau Canal skateway – is currently closed and remains a question mark for Friday.

The city of Ottawa has also switched gears from snow removal to clearing catch basins. More than 30 backhoes and other vehicles are out clearing roads from standing water and possible flooding.

Work crews are also racing against the warm weather on Parliament hill. There is a danger of melting snow falling off the copper roofs so crews are trying to get to them first.

More to come…