Winds for Nova Scotia, rains for New Brunswick - Jul. 04, 2014
Hurricane Arthur – or its remnants, at least – will bathe New Brunswick in heavy rains, while buffeting Nova Scotia with heavy winds.
As of noon Friday, Hurricane Arthur was 530 km south of Massachusetts, with winds of 150 km/hr, which is “just below category 2 for hurricanes,” said Environment Canada meteorologist Bob Robichaud in an afternoon teleconference and news briefing held in Halifax.
As of 1 p.m., the storm was moving northeast at 40 km/hr currently, on track for the Maritimes.
The storm, said Robichaud, is expected to make landfall in the early morning hours of Saturday, with post-tropical storm strength.
Its track is currently uncertain with the track predicting entry into the Maritimes anywhere from the Bay of Fundy to the southwest of Nova Scotia, but Environment Canada officials said they anticipate an update at 3 p.m. today, to narrow the path of the eye to make landfall somewhere between Saint John to the west, and the Annapolis Valley to the east.
“With these kinds of storms, you can expect heavy rains and strong winds,” stated Robichaud.
New Brunswick can expect the most accumulation of rainfall – amounts of 50-100 mm predicted - while the strongest winds will be confined to the southwest of Nova Scotia, possibly as great as 150 km/hr.
“Somebody will get about 150 mm,” in New Brunswick, suggested Chris Fogarty, program manager, hurricane centre.
That “somebody” could well include portions of this region, and Fogarty specifically mentioned St. Stephen, twice.
“The corridor for the access of maximum rainfall will include St. Stephen … up to Bathurst,” stated Fogarty.
Robichaud said the rains will be concentrated in about a 12-hour period.
“We could see 20 to 25 mm come down in any hour,” in the region of heavy rainfall. “There’s inevitably going to be some flooding from that.”
Were the hurricane to track more towards the east – in other words, closer to Saint John – the rainfall amounts for the Charlotte County region might diminish. However, given the current forecast, Fogarty said there is a high probability – 60 to 70 per cent chance – of having upwards of 75 mm falling in a three-hour period; however, there is considerable uncertainty as to where in the province such falls would accumulate.
The hurricane season has come early, with the weather making a “quick switch” to what Fogarty called an “August or September state.”
However, the early onset of hurricane season does not suggest a more active than normal season.
“You can’t read into this early storm a bad season,” said Fogarty.
But the immediate conclusion: this part of the world should brace for rains, and floods.
“You’ll have heavy rain,” Fogarty decreed.