Hundreds of thousands in Atlantic Canada continue without power after Hurricane
Over 240,000 Canadians across three provinces remained without power as of 6 am this Monday morning as many continue to try and recover two days after Hurricane Dorian hit Atlantic Canada.
According to CBC News, Nova Scotia was the hardest hit with 211,000 without power.
While Prince Edward Island was second with roughly 21,000.
New Brunswick had 15,000 without power, Newfoundland had 1,5000.
Recovery is currently in process, but according to Nova Scotia Power president Karen Hutt, the damage is so extensive it could take a whole week.
How hard was the Atlantic hit by Hurricane Dorian?
According to the Weather Network, even hours before the storm made landfall, 100 km/h winds could be felt. By the time the storm reached the provinces, winds had picked up to 155 km/h, causing trees to fall, and some cranes to snap over buildings.
As a result, life in Nova Scotia and it’s surrounding has not returned to normal, and are not expected to for some time, with many cell towers going down intermittently, some schools and business remaining closed, and military personal on the streets attempting to help clean up crews.
While living in the Atlantic provinces is sure to be hard following Dorian’s Category Two landing, areas like the Bahamas suffered from much worse as a result of Dorian’s Category Five status at the time. According to the United States, over 70,000 people were in need of food and shelter following the storm, and more than 40 have been confirmed dead as of now.
The count is expected to reach far higher as rescue, clean, and recovery plans continue.
Millions of Canadians throughout the Windsor-Quebec City corridor, all the way to Newfoundland and Labrador, will be facing what unique and brutal snowstorm that will cover over 2,500 km of Canada under a blanket of snow.
Overall, the storm is expected to span three days in six different provinces, with the snow in some areas expected to pile up to 50 centimetres. It’s estimated that over 16,000,000 Canadians will be impacted by the February snowfall.
Snow is expected to begin Saturday and go strong into Sunday night, though more southern areas of Canada will start seeing snowfall as early as Wednesday and Thursday morning.
The Niagara region will face a unique challenge, as snowfall is expected to turn into hail and freezing rain on Thursday.
Overall, Ontario will experience the least harsh weather conditions of all provinces. The further east we go, though, the more is expected.
Southern Quebec will experience heavy snow early Thursday morning, which could have an impact on anyone travelling throughout the weekend. Snow is expected to pile up to 25 cm throughout southern Quebec. This includes Quebec City and Montreal.
Atlantic Canada, as is often the case, will be on the receiving end of the most snow, with as much as 50 cm of snow possible for parts of P.E.I., New Brunswick, and Newfoundland. The Bay of Fundy area near New Brunswick and Nova Scotia will also likely be experiencing some freezing rain.
A state of emergency was declared for St. John’s today due to a giant storm system that is moving through eastern Newfoundland.
Northeast Avalon can expect as much as 75 cm of snow throughout the day today.
The blizzard passing through the area is forcing the city of St. John’s to brace themselves for strong winds and heavy snowfall.
Danny Breen, the Mayor of St. John’s declared that the city is in a state of emergency around 11 a.m. NT. During the state of emergency, all businesses have been ordered to close and all vehicles outside of emergency crew vehicles have been told to stay off the roads.
Breen told CBC News, “Anybody that’s out right now, you need to return to your home and you need to stay there until we lift the state of emergency.”
Over 75 centimetres of snow has been forecast for the Avalon Peninsula by tonight and winds up to 150 km/h are expected in coastal areas.
Even snowplows have been pulled from highways by Newfoundland and Labrador’s government.
The conditions in the area started to get much worse during the morning as visibility worsened.
Breen noted, “When you get the high winds like that, and the snow, there’s just so many issues at play that you really do need to just shut it down, get everything cleaned up.”
Breen also mentioned that this is the harshest storm he can recall in decades. He said he does not know when he will be able to lift the order.
Snow was falling at approximately 10 centimetres and hour in St. John’s this morning and could continue at 5 centimetres an hour through the rest of the day.
Environment Canada Meteorologist, Mike Vandenberg said, “This is gonna be a bad storm,” he added, “Visibility is expected to stay pretty bad with a lot of snow blowing around for the next 36 hours or so.”
Many schools have been closed by the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District. Metrobus also called off its transportation services and the St. John’s International Airport has cancelled most flights.
Vanderberg noted that recovering from the storm could take days as the storm will likely continue through to Saturday afternoon.
There is also a possibility of rising water levels and flooding near the region’s coast.
“One of our biggest concerns is that motorists may slow down due to poor visibility, get stuck in the snow, that sort of thing, and then a second motorist comes along and makes contact with the first — collides with the first,” said RCMP Const. Dave Bourden.
St. John’s residents are asked to stay indoors until further notice.
Meteorologists say Toronto and Southern Ontario will soon see the coldest weather it’s seen so far this year. Temperatures will drop and there will be a good deal of snow to top it off.
An extreme cold weather alert was issued by Toronto’s Medical Officer, Dr. Eileen de Villa.
Environment Canada issues these alerts when the temperature is forecast to be -15 C or lower. They are also issued if wind chill is predicted to make the air feel colder than -20 C.
The temperatures will be felt throughout the GTA.
Environment Canada says that on Thursday night there will be a low of -12 C in Toronto and the wind chill will make it feel like -19 C, accompanied by flurries.
The cold temperatures will carry on into Friday. The Weather Network said it will be “the coldest air we’ve seen so far in 2020.”
It is estimated that Toronto will see the most snow it’s seen all season with 20 cm expected through Saturday and Sunday.
De Villa’s alert from Thursday morning says, “Exposure to cold weather can be harmful to your health.”
“Those most at risk of cold-related illness are people experiencing homelessness or those under-housed, those who work outdoors, people with a pre-existing heart condition or respiratory illness, elderly people, infants and young children.”
Toronto Public Health is asking people to stay dry, wear layers and try to stay indoors if possible.
It is also advised that people keep tabs on friends, neighbours and family who may be more vulnerable to the dropping temperatures.
An annual snowball fight held at the University of British Columbia has been postponed due to a bombardment of snow, according to CTV. Unfortunately, a snowstorm has forced the organizers to move the event to Thursday at 12:30 p.m., according to a recent Facebook post.
UBC’s Point Grey campus had classes cancelled as well as other post-secondary schools in the area as a result of the storm.
The snowball fight known at the “Serious Snowy Showdown” will take place at the Main Mall between the Sauder and chemistry buildings on Thursday.
“Whether you breezed through syllabus week, took an extended vacation or are already submitting papers—we think it’s time for a break between classes. What better way to celebrate an early snowfall than one of our favourite campus traditions!”
Organizers are expecting thousands to show up for the “ultimate battle,” and joked on their Facebook event that this will be the perfect opportunity to “rally against that person in lecture who states things in the form of questions, provide some payback for the friend that ‘forgot’ your secret Santa gift or stand up to the roommates that stole your leftovers from the fridge.”
Tomorrow at 12:15 p.m. all who want to partake are asked to line-up on either side of the Mall. The next 15 minutes are for making your ammunition, and the first snowballs fly at 12:30.