Fiona ‘extremely strong and dangerous’ as hurricane watch issued for PEI, NS and NL.

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Hurricane Fiona has the potential to be a severe storm for parts of Eastern Canada this weekend.

The hurricane will track north and into the Maritimes late Friday and Saturday as it matures into a post-tropical storm. This post-tropical transition does not mean that the storm will be weaker, but its structure will change. It will expand and cover even more territory.

Bob Robichaud, meteorologist in charge of warning preparedness at Environment Canada, said at a press briefing Thursday that Hurricane Fiona is an “extremely strong and dangerous storm.”

Although the “cone of uncertainty” is still quite large, it is shrinking every day. Forecast models continue to project a landfall over Cape Breton or eastern Nova Scotia.

The latest forecast models for Hurricane Fiona project landfall over Cape Breton or eastern Nova Scotia. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

The storm was about 1,800 kilometers southwest of Halifax with an intensity of 215 km/h Thursday afternoon.

Although some uncertainty remains with the track and other details, the potential impacts are becoming clearer.

The rain will arrive long before Fiona. A cold front moving in from the west will bring its own rain through Thursday and Friday, then begin to draw moisture from Fiona.

This comes as Environment Canada issued a hurricane watch including all of Prince Edward Island, eastern Nova Scotia including Cape Breton Island, western Newfoundland and the Magdalen Islands.

A tropical storm watch or record is also in place for parts of southern Quebec, western Nova Scotia, eastern New Brunswick and much of Newfoundland and Labrador, including the Eastern Peninsula. ‘Avalon.

WATCH | Fiona’s full forecast from CBC meteorologist Ryan Snoddon

Fiona is likely to become a very strong post-tropical storm when it hits Atlantic Canada

CBC meteorologist Ryan Snoddon says post-tropical means the storm is no longer feeding from water, but rather from temperature contrasts in the atmosphere. He said Fiona is still on track to bring heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge.

“Every storm is different,” Robichaud said.

He added that there are a variety of factors, including whether the storm moves away from its current track, that could affect how hard the region is hit, although Fiona’s coverage area is reminiscent of Hurricane Dorian. of 2019.

“Will he be as strong as [Hurricane] Juan when Juan made landfall in 2003 where there were extreme winds but they were concentrated in a small area?” he said: “This storm is going to be bigger than Juan’s, but maybe a little stronger than us. seen with Dorian.”

WATCH | NS officials update on preparations for the storm

The heaviest rain is expected as Fiona passes through Friday evening and Saturday. In the early hours of Saturday, Robichaud said the center of the storm is expected to cross Cape Breton, but could veer east or west toward central Nova Scotia or western Newfoundland. -and-Labrador.

Prolonged heavy rains will lead to the potential for flooding, especially along and to the left of the track. Rainfall amounts in these areas could reach 100 to 150 millimeters and up to 200 millimeters.

With the storm growing in size, very strong winds are expected over a wide area. With trees in full leaf, the potential for power failure will be high.

“It is expected to slow considerably as it makes landfall and moves into the Gulf of St. Lawrence. When that happens, given the size of the storm, given the that slow, forward motion, that’s just going to prolong some of those stronger winds,” Robichaud said.

“It’s not going to be a situation where we have two, three hours of really strong winds and then they die down. We’re going to get that, plus an extended period of stronger winds in areas to the right and left of the storm. “

Hurricane Fiona will track north and into the Maritimes late Friday and Saturday as it develops into a post-tropical storm. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

The heaviest rain is expected as Fiona passes through Friday evening and Saturday, and will bring a risk of flooding in some areas. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

Widespread gusts of more than 100 km/h are likely in central and eastern Nova Scotia, Cape Breton, Prince Edward Island and western and southwestern Land -New. In these areas, gusts could exceed 130 km/h, especially in exposed coastal areas.

Even in areas further west, gusts above 70 km/h seem possible.

Widespread gusts over 100 km/h are likely in central and eastern Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

A storm surge is also likely. The impact will be highly dependent on the path and timing of the storm and how well it coincides with high tide. Stay tuned for more details.

Those in the storm’s path must ensure that their the emergency kit is ready to go and their propane tank is full. Check that your downspouts and storm drains are clear and make sure your sump pump and generator are in good working order.

WATCH | Hurricane Fiona is heading towards Atlantic Canada

Hurricane Fiona is heading towards Atlantic Canada

Atlantic Canada braces for the impact of Hurricane Fiona as the Category 4 storm heads north.

Fire safety during the storm

Erica Fleck is Deputy Chief of Emergency Management for Halifax Fire and Emergency.

She told CBC News that her crews were preparing for a “major event,” including possible storm surges and flooding. She said fallen leaves could clog catch basins, keeping water on the surface, and the dry ground will take time to absorb it.

A man works to secure equipment at a port in Shediac, New Brunswick
A man works to secure equipment at a port in Shediac, N.B. Thursday, Sept. 22, as the region prepares for the approach of Hurricane Fiona. (CBC/Radio Canada)

Customers line up to fill up propane tanks at a Halifax Costco on Thursday, September 22, 2022. Hurricane Fiona is expected to make landfall in Nova Scotia on Saturday. (Radio-Canada)

Trees could fall and block roads, she added.

She said her staff are prepared to work long hours on weekends if needed. She urged people supplied with well water to be prepared in case they lose electricity and access to that water.

“The biggest danger is the theft of items from people who don’t secure their items,” she said, listing trampolines, flowerpots, toys, bicycles and other items of outside. She said if you bring a barbecue inside, disconnect the propane and don’t run anything on fuel inside your house.

WATCH | Halifax Fire’s Erica Fleck on storm preparedness

Halifax prepares for Hurricane Fiona

Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency Chief Erica Fleck provides an update on how Atlantic Canadians should prepare as Hurricane Fiona upgrades to a Category 4 hurricane heading towards the Maritimes .

She also urged people to avoid using candles due to the risk of fire.

“The most important thing is that people stay indoors and stay safe,” she said. “If they need to evacuate, they call 911 and we evacuate them immediately. We’ll have emergency shelters open before the storm hits.”

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