Atlantic Canada to be hit by back-to-back storms: meteorologist

Gusts and a wintry mix of precipitation, snow expected as a low-pressure system tracks the region

A meteorologist with Environment Canada says the East Coast is in for back-to-back winter storms over the holidays.

Jean-Marc Couturier said vast swaths of Atlantic Canada are expected to see gusts and a wintry mix of precipitation as a low-pressure system tracks across the region on Saturday night.

“For tonight, all of Atlantic Canada is dealing with this first storm, and then a number of different impacts depending where you are,” Couturier said in an interview on Saturday.

“It looks like we’ll have another round of this coming up on Christmas Day and probably into Boxing Day as well. It’s going to be an interesting few days weather-wise, that’s for sure.”

Couturier said Nova Scotians should expect heavy rainfall, while conditions in Newfoundland and New Brunswick look to be frostier with precipitation changing between ice pellets, freezing rain and snowfall.

Atlantic Canadians will see little reprieve before another storm hits on Monday, he said, bringing potentially significant amounts of snowfall, wind and several types of rain.

Parts of the region may could see either a white or wet Christmas depending on conditions, said Couturier.

He said Nova Scotians can look forward to a bit of snow on Monday morning, but the joy of seeing fresh powder will likely be short-lived with forecasts predicting above-freezing temperatures later in the day.

However, Couturier said, some areas New Brunswick may be getting more snow than they bargained for on Christmas Day.

“If I risk throwing a number, I would say a range of 15 to 25 centimetres (of snowfall). That’s an early number, could be more,” he said. ”We are expecting a lot of wind as well, so some blowing and drifting and reduced visibilities, so it’s going to be pretty difficult across New Brunswick.”

The storm is expected to cross Newfoundland’s west coast, which could see blizzard-like conditions on Monday, he said.

He said P.E.I. is expected to see a “shot” of snow before switching to rain.

Couturier warns that travellers’ holiday plans could be interrupted by cancelled flights and ferries, but said they may be able to make it to their destination on Christmas Eve or Boxing Day.

“I’m sure a lot of people don’t think this is ideal or are not necessarily happy to hear that,” he said. “If we’re here and we talk about it, at least people can adapt and make some changes to their plans.”

The Canadian Press

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