Nor’easter nails U.S. Northeast

Scituate MA

Heavy waves crash into homes in Scituate, MA, USA, 02 March 2018 (Boston Globe)

A powerful storm surge forced water from the Atlantic to pour into the streets of Boston as huge waves crashed along the Massachusetts coast in a powerful Nor’easter roaring through the American Northeast.

For the second time this year alone, businesses tried to prevent flooding by using barriers and sandbags.

The storm packed strong winds with gusts of more than 110 km/h with driving rain in coastal areas to heavy snow in upstate New York.

Power has been knocked out for millions of customers and thousands of flights have been cancelled from Maine to North Carolina.

The Maritimes has managed to escape this system which will head out to sea but not before brushing southwestern Nova Scotia with gusty winds and heavy surf.

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Rivers spill banks in SW Ontario

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Days of rain, melting snow and ice jams have created swollen rivers and streams in Southwestern Ontario causing historic flooding.

A young boy was swept from his mother’s arms in a stranded vehicle along the Grand River near Orangeville and efforts to find him are still underway.

Streets, homes and businesses in low-lying areas of Chatham-Kent were flooded after officials say the Thames River peaked at 5.25 metres above normal Saturday.

Emergency responders had to rescue some residents by boat who were taken to a local convention centre for shelter.

Flooding in northern France

A street lamp and a tree are seen on the flooded banks of the River Seine in Paris

Flooding along the River Seine in Paris, France, 27 Jan 2018 (Reuters)

According to France’s meteorological agency, rain in December and January has led to the third wettest period ever in Paris which is why the River Seine and other tributaries in northern France have spilled their banks.

The river is expected to peak on Sunday at 6 metres – normally it measures 2 metres – slightly below the exceptional flooding in 2016 and the disastrous flood of 1910.

Some riverside restaurants have been submerged and roads and parks have been closed due to high water levels.

All boat traffic on the Seine has been halted including tourist cruises, some Metro stations are shuttered and the Louvre has shut down the museum’s lower level as a precaution.

Flooding destroys roads, bridges across southern N.B.

 

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Kay Road is washed out by flooding in McKees Mills, Kent County, NB, 14 Jan 2018 (91.9 The Bend/Facebook)

Heavy rain and fast melting snow from the weekend storm swelled rivers and streams throughout Southern New Brunswick.

Floodwaters swept away culverts and damaged bridges including the historic covered Bell Bridge which crews say is beyond repair and will be torn down.

Washouts and severe erosion forced the Department of Transportation to close dozens of roads and reduce others to one lane.

Residents have been urged to report storm damage to the provincial Emergency Measures Organization and contact their insurance companies for losses.

Flooding then flash freeze

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Satellite image taken just before cold front sweeps through Maritimes, 13 Jan 2018 (earth.nullschool.net)

After a low pressure system brought heavy rain and strong winds gusting up to 74 km/h to Southeast New Brunswick early today, a cold front moved through the region plummeting temperatures below freezing.

The thermometer in Greater Moncton dropped an incredible 14 degrees in just one hour – from 15 C at 11am to 1 C at noon – and then fell below zero shortly afterward.

Today’s daytime high of 16.7 C has unofficially broken the 13 January record of 12.2 C from 1972.

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Floodwaters in Moncton near Wheeler Blvd. and Crowley Farm Rd., 13 Jan 2018 (City of Moncton)

Flooding was reported in various parts of Greater Moncton and the province was forced to close some roads due to high water levels.

Before the precipitation ends later tonight, rain will change to freezing rain mixed with ice pellets and then finally to snow.

Record January thaw

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Icy conditions in a parking lot of NE Moncton, 11 Jan 2018 (Dearing)

A few days ago it was extremely cold in Greater Moncton and today it felt like spring.

The unofficial high was 14.3 C which beats the record of 11.2 C from 2014 according to Environment Canada.

But emergency measures officials are warning New Brunswickers to be prepared for possible flooding this weekend with 50 to 100 mm of rain possible and a flash freeze warning.

The ground is mostly frozen and has a reduced ability to absorb heavy rainfall.

The temperature is forecast to fall below freezing by late Saturday which will lead to icy conditions.

Arctic air to retreat

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Snow is piled high in Boston, MA, USA, 05 Jan 2018 (AP)

Much of New Brunswick was under another extreme cold warning this weekend with a near record low of -22.3 C in Greater Moncton today (record is -23.3 C from 1945) and a bone-chilling wind chill near -36.

Environment Canada is calling for temperatures to moderate this week with a return to near normal values and even above freezing temperatures by Thursday.

The Northeast United States has also been under a cold snap and the thermometer bottomed out Sunday with record lows in a number of cities including Burlington, Vermont at -29 C and Portland, Maine at -24 C.

Boston, Massachusetts tied its record low of -19 C just days after digging out from 34 cm of snow during the ‘bomb cyclone’ and being inundated with icy floodwaters from the highest tides in a century.

Greater Moncton spared worst of storm

HfxwaterfrontJan5.18

Powerful storm surge causes flooding along the waterfront in Halifax, NS, 05 Jan 2018 (Twitter)

The ‘bomb cyclone’ or ‘snow hurricane’ – featuring a dramatic drop in atmospheric pressure when warm and cold air collided – has left the Maritimes and spared Southeast New Brunswick from the worst of its fury.

While strong winds were a factor throughout the region, Greater Moncton received less snow compared to further north and west.

To the south and east, more rain fell along with hurricane-force winds (up to 200 km/h gusts in western Cape Breton) which created powerful storm surges causing flooding along the coast.

Here are some totals from Environment Canada and local estimates:

  • Greater Moncton Airport  14 cm snow, 10 mm rain, 91 km/h wind gust
  • Bathurst  58 cm snow, 80 km/h wind gust
  • Fredericton  30 cm snow, 78 km/h wind gust
  • Saint John  5 cm snow, 20 mm rain, 87 km/h wind gust
  • Halifax Stanfield Airport  40 mm rain, trace snow, 122 km/h wind gust

The storm may have departed but Arctic air has filtered back into the Maritimes which will mean a bitterly cold weekend.

Maria becomes a menace

MariaThe parade of hurricanes in the Atlantic continues with Maria making landfall late tonight over the eastern Caribbean island nation of Dominica as a powerful category 5 storm packing sustained winds of 260 km/h.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center is outlying a path for Maria which is eerily similar to the recent Hurricane Irma with the U.S and British Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico expected to be impacted on Wednesday.

Maria will be accompanied by a dangerous storm surge and between 300-500 mm (12-20 inches) of rain to some of the islands causing life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.

Meantime, Hurricane Jose is still churning northward as a category 1 storm with heavy surf and rip currents along the U.S East Coast from North Carolina to Massachusetts.

Canadian forecasters say the remnants of Jose have already brought high humidity to the Maritimes and will give Nova Scotia persistent moisture and cloud cover as well as rough surf along the Atlantic coast.

Irma swamps Florida

The impact of Hurricane Irma in Miami, FL, USA, 10 Sept 2017 (AP)

Irma was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm today after slamming Florida with destructive wind, heavy rain, flash flooding, high storm surges and even tornadoes.

Irma, one of the most powerful hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean, made landfall over the Florida Keys on Sunday before coming ashore near Naples and then heading up the state’s west coast.

Miami was not in the storm’s direct path but was still battered by strong winds which swayed high rise buildings, brought down three construction cranes and downtown streets were swamped.

In northeast Florida, Jacksonville had historic flooding after the swollen St. Johns River spilled its banks and officials said dangerous conditions were expected for several days.

Prior to arriving in the United States, Irma claimed 10 lives in Cuba according to state media after battering Havana and tourist resorts such as Varadero and Cayo Coco where the international airport was destroyed.