Hurricane Fiona: Storm likely to be ‘extreme weather event’ as it heads toward eastern Canada, meteorologists warn

Forecasters at the Canadian Hurricane Center warned Friday afternoon of a “severe weather event” in eastern Canada, threatening strong winds, dangerous storms and downpours for about two months. Some parts, such as the Canadian Maritimes, are likely to start feeling the effects Friday evening, the center said.

“This could be a historic event for Canada in terms of tropical cyclone intensity,” said Chris Fogarty, director of the Canadian Hurricane Center, and it could become Canada’s version of Superstorm Sandy. Hurricane Sandy affected 24 states and all of the East Coast, causing an estimated $78.7 billion in damage.

Officials in Canada’s Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island urged those in the path of the storm to remain on high alert and prepare for the impact of the hurricane, which has already killed at least five people and cut power to millions this week. Hit many Caribbean islands.

Fiona strengthened to a Category 4 storm early Wednesday over the Atlantic after passing the Turks and Caicos Islands, and remained so until Friday afternoon.

The storm weakened slightly but was still hitting strong hurricane-force winds more than 100 miles from its center and tropical storm winds extending more than 300 miles, the National Hurricane Center said in its 8 p.m. EDT warning.

Its epicenter was about 215 miles southeast of Halifax on Friday night.

“Although gradual weakening is expected over the next couple of days, Fiona is expected to be a strong hurricane with hurricane force as it moves across Atlantic Canada,” the Center He said.

Hurricane warning for parts of Nova Scotia

In Canada, Nova Scotia hurricane warnings were from Hubbards to Brule and in Newfoundland from Parson Pond to Francois. Prince Edward Island and Isle de la Madeleine are also under warnings.

“It’s potentially very dangerous,” said John Loehr, the minister in charge of the Office of Emergency Management. FOr Nova Scotia. Loehr added, “One can expect to feel the effects throughout the province. Every Nova Scotia citizen should prepare today.” During an official update Thursday.

Loehr said residents should prepare for damaging winds, high waves, coastal storms and torrential rain, which could lead to prolonged power outages. Emergency officials encouraged people to secure outdoor materials, trim trees, charge cell phones, and set up a 72-hour emergency kit.

The area hasn’t experienced a storm of this intensity in nearly 50 years, according to Chris Fogarty, director of the Canadian Hurricane Center.

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“Please take it seriously because we see the meteorological numbers in our weather maps that rarely appear here,” Fogarty said.

Utility company Nova Scotia Power activated an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Friday morning that will serve as the central coordination area for outage recovery and response, according to a press release.

The company will also work closely with the Nova Scotia Office of Emergency Management.

“We are taking every precaution and will be prepared to respond to Hurricane Fiona as safely and efficiently as possible,” Sean Borden, Nova Scotia Power Storm Command Coordinator, said in the statement.

Andy Francis, a fisherman in southwest Newfoundland, was preparing for the storm this week, taking a boat out of the water and mooring another to a nearby pier.

“This time everyone seems to have the same consensus that this is going to be bad,” he said. CBC News. He told the station that everyone in the area was also preparing to help “minimize the damage”.

“This is going to be different,” Francis told CBC.

Across Atlantic Canada, winds could be around 100 mph (160 km/h) as Fiona is expected to weaken slightly before making landfall in Nova Scotia, Rob Shackelford and Taylor Ward, CNN meteorologists said.

Prince Edward Island officials have appealed to residents to prepare for the worst as the storm approaches.

Tania Mullally, who serves as the county’s emergency management chief, said one of the most pressing concerns with Fiona is the historic storm that is expected to unleash her.

“The storm surge is certainly going to be significant… floods that we haven’t seen and we can’t measure,” Molly said on Thursday. during update.

Bob Rubishod, a meteorologist at the center, said Canadian hurricane center modeling indicated that the increase “depending on region, could range anywhere from 1.8 to 2.4 meters (6-8 feet)”.

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Molly said the northern part of the island would bear the brunt of the storm due to the direction of the winds, which could potentially cause property damage and coastal flooding.

The Nova Scotia Office of Emergency Management said all regional campgrounds, beaches and day-use parks as well as Shubenacadie Wildlife Park closed Friday.

Power outages continue in Fiona

Earlier this week, Fiona damaged homes and overturned critical power and water infrastructure for millions of people across Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Turks and Caicos.

Days after Puerto Rico experienced an island-wide blackout with Fiona making landfall on Sunday, only 41% of customers regained power on Friday, according to figures from the power grid operator. Loma Energy Posted on Island emergency gate system.

The mass blackout is happening because most of Puerto Rico is experiencing sweltering heat, causing temperatures to soar to 112 degrees Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. Temperatures remained in the 80s and 90s on Friday, according to Taylor Ward, a CNN meteorologist.

Many across Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic remain without electricity or running water as Hurricane Fiona heads toward Bermuda

Daniel Hernandez, director of renewable energy projects at LUMA, explained that critical places including hospitals will be prioritized before repairs begin at the individual level.

“This is a normal process,” Hernandez said. “The important thing is for everyone to be calm… We’re working to ensure 100% of customers get service as quickly as possible.”

And more than a quarter of customers on the island do not have water service or have intermittent service, according to the emergency gate system.

Nancy Gallarza looks back at the damage Hurricane Fiona has done to her community, which remained isolated four days after the storm swept through the San Salvador rural community in Caguas, Puerto Rico, Thursday.

In the Dominican Republic, Fiona has affected more than 800 families They destroyed 2,262 homes, according to the country’s head of emergency operations, Major General Juan Mendez Garcia.

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He said more than 210,000 homes and stores were still in the dark Thursday morning, and another 725,246 customers were without running water.

“It was an incredible thing we hadn’t seen before,” Ramona Santana in Higuay, Dominican Republic, told CNN en Español this week. “We’re on the streets with nothing, no food, no shoes, no clothes, just what’s on your back… We don’t have anything. We have God, and hopefully help will come.”

Fiona also threatened parts of the Turks and Caicos Islands on Tuesday, and areas of the British territory remained without power earlier this week, namely in Grand Turk, South Caicos, Salt Cay, North Caicos and Central Caicos, according to Anya Williams, acting governor of the territory. . carrots.

CNN’s Alison Chenchar, Melissa Alonso, Anna Melgar Zuniga, and Amanda Musa contributed to this report.

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