Storm surge expected to hit Fiona, Nova Scotia, Canada

One of the strongest storms to hit Canada struck the Nova Scotia coastline early Saturday, leaving hundreds of thousands of people without power.

Former Hurricane Fiona made landfall Saturday morning in Gasborough County, in the northeastern corner of mainland Nova Scotia, the Canadian Weather Service said. It added that maximum sustained winds were near 81 mph, while peak gusts were over 100 mph.

According to the Canadian Weather Service, it was the lowest pressure landfall storm on record in Canada. Canadian Hurricane Centre, which also describes the hurricane strong winds that hit the region. More than 40 percent of Nova Scotia’s population is affected by power outages, according to utility Nova Scotia power.

Formerly a hurricane, the National Hurricane Center declared that Fiona evolved into a post-tropical cyclone as it raced north, exhibiting storm characteristics of tropical and high-latitude ancestry.

Regardless of its technical name, forecasters are warning that the storm will be a blockbuster.

“This storm will have severe impacts on Atlantic Canada and eastern Quebec,” the Canadian Hurricane Centre wrote Friday. The federal agency previously said the storm had the potential to become a “historic” and”Landmark Weather Events. “

The storm was expected to be so severe that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau postponed Friday’s visit to Japan, where he was scheduled to attend Shinzo Abe’s funeral.

The hurricane warning covers most of Nova Scotia as well as Prince Edward Island and western Newfoundland, where meteorologists are forecasting 3 to 6 inches of rain, up to 10 inches in some areas, and hurricane winds of at least 74 mph Hour. A tropical storm warning extends from New Brunswick to eastern Quebec to northern Newfoundland, where up to 5 inches of rain and winds of at least 39 mph are possible.

The center is also forecasting sizable tides, or storm-driven water levels higher than normally dry land, leading to coastal flooding. It predicts “turbulent surf” with waves reaching 26 to 40 feet (8 to 12 meters).

A look at Canada’s strongest past storms as Fiona eyes Nova Scotia

Ahead of the storm, Nova Scotia, home to about 1 million people, was bracing for the worst on Friday.

Nova Scotia Power warned of widespread power outages, with trees still in bloom and relatively soft soil, and activated its emergency operations centre. The outage could be prolonged as crews will wait for winds to subside before it is safe to begin repairs, said Dave Pixar, the utility’s chief operating officer.

Fiona brought devastating flooding to Puerto Rico and cut power to the entire island, the latest sign of a slow but suddenly active start to the Atlantic hurricane season. The storm is one of five systems meteorologists are watching in the Atlantic Basin, one of which organized into Tropical Storm Ian Friday night and could soon become a hurricane threat to Florida.

Jason Samenow contributed to this report.

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