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As Fiona advances, meteorologists get clearer idea of impact in Halifax

'This is definitely going to be a severe storm,' the Canadian Hurricane Centre's Ian Hubbard said Thursday morning
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Fiona's projected track as of 9 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 22

As Fiona advances our way, meteorologists are getting a clearer picture of what we can expect when she arrives.

A hurricane watch has now officially been issued for the Halifax Regional Municipality, and a rainfall warning has been added as of Thursday afternoon.

The storm is currently about 1,900 km southwest of Halifax. It's expect to start affecting us by Friday evening, with conditions deteriorating late Friday into Saturday.

"This is definitely going to be a severe storm," the Canadian Hurricane Centre's Ian Hubbard told CityNews Halifax in a Thursday morning interview. 

"There's going to be a lot of impact in terms of rainfall, particularly with wind, and we're going to see some waves and storm surge affect many areas as well."

Prior to that, we'll be getting some rain Thursday night and early Friday associated with a trough, then Fiona is expected to merge with that system.

Here in Halifax, Hubbard said the rain from Fiona should start falling Friday evening and it will likely continue into early afternoon on Saturday.

"For the HRM area right now, we're looking at amounts possibly as much as 100 mm," he stated. "Other parts of the province are going to see more than that. Eastern areas and towards Cape Breton are going to see 150, maybe even some areas as much as 200 mm."

Fiona is on track to make landfall in either Guysborough County or further east into Cape Breton as a post-tropical storm, however Hubbard cautions it will still be packing hurricane force winds.

Nova Scotians are being asked to take steps now to get ready for the weather conditions, and potentially, the resulting extended power outages.

It should start getting a little gusty here in Halifax by Friday afternoon, and pick up further Friday evening.

"It looks like the strongest winds are going to be running from midnight to early morning," Hubbard said. 

"And when we're talking about wind strength here, we're looking at gusts from the north and northwest, and generally over 100 [km/h]," he added. "You're going to see some higher gusts, 120 or more along the immediate coastline, and probably a little bit less than 100 further away from the coast."

Waves and storm surge will also be an issue for many areas. 

The Canadian Hurricane Centre expects large waves from the south to reach the eastern shore of Nova Scotia Friday night and build to more than 10 metres. Coastal flooding will be a threat for parts of the province.

"For us in the city, we'll start to see much improving conditions Saturday afternoon," Hubbard said.

UPDATE: You'll be able to listen to live, local coverage of the storm starting at 6 a.m. Saturday on CityNews 95.7.




Meghan Groff

About the Author: Meghan Groff

Born in Michigan, raised in Ontario, schooled in Indiana and lives in Nova Scotia; Meghan is the editor for CityNews Halifax.
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