Canada braces for its strongest storm ever as Hurricane Fiona makes its way into the country. According to reports, Fiona was about 1,200 miles southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Thursday morning, and the area is already bracing for a rare and historic impact.
The storm recently caused extensive damage in the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos Islands and other parts of the Caribbean.
Hurricane Fiona is expected to hit Bermuda from tonight through Friday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center.
It stated: “Major swells caused by Fiona are expected to create life-threatening surf and current conditions along much of the east coast of the United States, the Bahamas, Bermuda and Atlantic Canada in the coming days.”
The National Hurricane Center predicts the storm will “continue to produce hurricane-force winds as it crosses Nova Scotia and enters the Gulf of St. Lawrence.”
In fact, the storm can still carry winds in excess of 100 mph when it closes on land.
John Lohr, the minister in charge of the provincial Emergency Management Office, said on Thursday: “Every Nova Scotia should prepare today and brace for impact.”
Mr Lohr, of Nova Scotia’s emergency management agency, said the storm has the potential to be “very dangerous” for the province.
He said: “The storm is expected to bring severe and damaging wind gusts, very high waves and storm surges along the coast, intense and dangerous rainfall and prolonged power outages.
“The time to get ready is now before Fiona strikes tomorrow night.”
According to AccuWeather. Fiona is expected to move rapidly north into Atlantic Canada while maintaining hurricane intensity, with damaging winds, flooding and coastal flooding starting Friday, which forecasters warned could lead to widespread power outages.
“This could be the storm of a lifetime for some people,” AccuWeather chief meteorologist Jonathan Porter said Thursday.
Satellite images on Thursday showed that Fiona was a massive storm with hurricane-force winds extending out about 70 miles (110 kilometers) from the storm’s center and tropical gale-force winds extending 205 miles (335 km).
AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson, who routinely issues weather forecasts for Canada, said: “Fiona will likely be the most intense storm ever recorded, taking into account central pressure and magnitude of gusts expected to hit eastern Nova Scotia. . weekend.”
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Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and western Newfoundland can get up to 6 inches of rain, while some areas can get up to 10 inches of rain.
Mike Savage, the mayor of the Halifax Regional Municipality, Nova Scotia’s capital, warned wave watchers and surfers to stay away from coastal areas, adding that people who live near the coast “should be prepared to to move at short notice and pay close attention to possible evacuation orders.”
He told CNN, “In our entire Halifax region, you need to be prepared for fallen trees, extended power outages and local flooding.”
Cape Breton Regional Municipality Mayor Amanda McDougall said officials are preparing and working to ensure residents are safe as the area is in “the immediate impact zone.”
He said: “We need to make sure there is a center for people to go before the storm because we know there are different types of housing that can’t withstand the wind, the floods, like other buildings can. ”