Hurricane Fiona is shaping up to be a ‘potentially severe event’ for Atlantic Canada

Hurricane Fiona could potentially be a severe event for Atlantic Canadian provinces.

In an early Wednesday morning update, Environment Canada said Fiona is now expected to impact the eastern shore on Friday, as it transforms into a strong post-tropical storm.

The weather agency said there are indications of a deep hybrid low-pressure system, which possesses both tropical and intense winter storm-type properties. Fiona could bring very heavy rainfall and severe winds.

But, Canadian Hurricane Center meteorologist Ian Hubbard said regardless of whether it’s classified as a post-tropical storm, or a hurricane, “we’re still going to see very significant impacts from this.”

Environment Canada says the cone of uncertainty with hurricane Fiona is becoming narrower as it continues to track north.

Environment Canada

“There’s going to be a lot of energy, a lot of rain, and a lot of wind associated with that, regardless of what the storm is categorized at that time,” he said.

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“Even if you hear later on in the week that it’s no longer a hurricane, it doesn’t mean that things have gone away and we’re out of the water.”

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Hurricane Fiona threatens to gain strength as the storm heads to Bermuda

Hubbard said Fiona has strengthened to a category 4 hurricane on Wednesday and is currently located about 1,100 kilometers southwest of Bermuda.

“(Fiona) is expected to stay over an area in the atmosphere and over the ocean that’s going to help keep it very strong over the next 24 hours,” he said.

Current forecast

The uncertainty range shrunk to about 600 to 700 kilometers Wednesday, centered over Cape Breton, “with a broad coverage of hurricane-force winds including over land,” Environment Canada’s update said.

According to Hubbard, the impacts of Fiona will not be contained near the center of the track, but is expected to “be widespread and see significant rain and wind over a larger area, portions of eastern Nova Scotia, PEI and southwestern Newfoundland.”

Nova Scotia and PEI can expect to see rainfall during the day on Friday, although Hubbard said that it won’t be from Fiona.

Later on Friday, “Fiona is going to start to interact with this trough and that’s when the main rain from the hurricane will be pushing up and arriving over parts of the Maritimes,” he said, adding winds will also pick up late Friday.

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Friday night and Saturday morning (are) looking like the time we’re going to see the strongest winds from this storm, at this point, and then maybe a little bit lingering on later into Saturday night.”

Some storm surge and flooding in coastal areas is also expected.

Newfoundland is not expected to see as much rain from Fiona, but will certainly see “very gusty and potentially damaging winds”.”

Hubbard added now is a good time for Atlantic Canadians to start preparing for the arrival of Fiona.

“There’s no escaping the impacts from it; rain and wind are going to happen, they’re going to be significant.”

He recommended having an emergency kit and taking outdoor furniture in.

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Hurricane Fiona rips through Puerto Rico, unleashes landslides, knocks out power

A new update on Fiona from Environment Canada will be released Wednesday at 3 pm AT. The agency expects to have more details on rainfall, waves and storm surge then.

The Canadian Hurricane Center has been monitoring Hurricane Fiona as of Sunday. It has already caused widespread damage in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.

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Forecasters said the storm would cause massive flooding and threatened to dump “historic” levels of rain, with up to 76 centimeters possible in some areas.

A state of emergency was declared in the US territory as the eye of the storm approached the island. According to the US National Hurricane Center, it is forecasted that the center of Fiona will pass near Grand Turk and the other eastern Turks and Caicos during the day.

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