Heat wave in the West

Environment Canada issued heat warnings for most of Alberta along with parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba this week in the wake of sizzling high temperatures.

The weather office says a daytime maximum of 30 C or higher could pose an elevated risk of heat-related illnesses and residents should avoid outdoor activities until cooler hours of the day.

Temperatures could climb to 33 C as far north as Thompson and almost 30 C in Churchill along the Hudson Bay coast.

Forecasters say the extreme heat will continue this weekend but a slight cool down is expected early next week.

Firefighters make progress in B.C. wildfires

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Active wildfires burning in BC, 13 July 2017 (BC Wildfire Service/Google)

More than 300 firefighters from across Canada including New Brunswick are now in British Columbia to relieve those already on the ground battling over 180 wildfires.

Some progress has been made thanks to recent cooler weather but 14,000 residents have been evacuated and thousands more are on alert to leave their homes at short notice.

Forecasters say gusty winds expected this weekend could fan the flames even further and the heat is also expected to return.

The economy of the B.C. Interior is taking a hit this summer with many campgrounds and provincial parks forced to close due to the wildfires and related road closures.

Warmer weather ushers out cold

Brilliant pink sky over NE Moncton, 06 June 2017 (Dearing)


At least one New Brunswick location dropped to a new low on 06 June.

Environment Canada says Kouchibouguac National Park set a new cold record of -1.7 C which broke the old minimum of -1.1 C from 1958.

Greater Moncton managed to escape frost this week thanks to cloud cover although the thermometer fell to the freezing point tying a record low.

Following a brief period of very warm air, forecasters say temperatures will reach near seasonal values for the short term.

Cool, unsettled start to June

Ominous clouds near Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, 03 June 2017 (Dearing)

Weather conditions have been cool and unsettled in the Maritimes over the past several days.

While driving in Nova Scotia on Friday, I encountered everything from clouds and heavy downpours to a clearing sky with bright sunshine to clouds and rain again.

On the way home to New Brunswick on Saturday, I encountered similar conditions.

In Greater Moncton today, the thermometer climbed to a daytime high of only 10.6 C under a dreary sky which is about 10 degrees below normal for early June.

Forecasters say warmer, more seasonal temperatures will return by Wednesday but not before a risk of frost in Southeast New Brunswick by early Tuesday.

Sunshine and dandelions 

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Dandelions growing in NE Moncton, 13 May 2017 (Dearing)

The dandelions are out in full force as Southeast New Brunswick welcomed a beautiful, sunny day following a cold, grey and rainy week.

The normal high in Greater Moncton for mid-May is 17 C and temperatures didn’t even reach 10 C for two days in a row.

Rainfall has already reached 87 mm and the normal monthly total is 93 mm.

Forecasters are calling for 20-30 mm rain early next week thanks to another low pressure system.

Winter returns to the U.K.

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Snow covers a vehicle in Aviemore, Scotland, UK, 25 April 2017 (BBC Weather)


Arctic air has enveloped the United Kingdom with heavy snow in Scotland and northern England and near freezing temperatures as far south as London.

Forecasters say snow in late April is not uncommon and actually fell over parts of the country around the same time last year.

Temperatures struggled to reach 10 C today after a hard frost early this morning.

This cold snap is a far cry from record breaking heat earlier this month when the thermometer climbed to 26 C in southern England and a mild March which was the fifth warmest ever for the U.K.

Nor’easter not as bad as expected

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Snow begins falling in NE Moncton, 14 March 2017 (Dearing)

An intense Nor’easter moved into New Brunswick last night from the U.S.Eastern Seaboard with heavy, wet snow and high winds creating blowing snow and poor visibility.

Snow switched over to rain over southern and central New Brunswick with a
brief period of freezing rain and ice pellets.

Forecasters had originally said up to 45 cm of snow could fall in parts of the province.

Summary of snowfall in centimetres:

Bathurst 30
Kouchibouguac 26
Fredericton 20
Edmundston 18
Moncton 17
Miramichi 16
Saint John 15

Summary of maximum winds in kilometres per hour:

Grand Manan 102
Saint John 102
Miramichi 81
Fredericton 80
Moncton 78
CFB Gagetown 72
Kouchibouguac 61

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Nor’easter replacing frigid air

Screenshot (76)_LIThe last week of winter in New Brunswick has felt more like January than March but that frigid air is about to be replaced by a powerful Nor’easter forming off the U.S. Eastern Seaboard from two low pressure systems.

Overnight temperatures plunged to -20.1 C in Greater Moncton on the weekend which is close to a record low and daytime highs remained well below freezing with dangerous wind chills as low as -35 at times.

Environment Canada says heavy snow and winds creating blowing snow will move into southwestern New Brunswick Tuesday afternoon and spread to the remainder of the province in the evening.

Snow will likely change to rain by early Wednesday with most areas of the province expected to receive up to 30 cm of snow.

Before the storm reaches the Maritimes, forecasters say the Nor’easter could drop between 30 and 50 cm of snow in the U.S. Northeast from Washington DC to New York to Boston.

First Nor’easter of season coming

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Courtesy Facebook/Maritime Weather Agency

A Nor’easter will track south of Nova Scotia on Sunday delivering a mixture of rain, snow and possibly freezing rain or ice pellets to much of the Maritimes.

Environment Canada says rain is expected over southeastern New Brunswick near midday Sunday before changing to snow in the afternoon and spreading northward.

Significant snowfall is possible over eastern regions of the province Sunday evening but forecasters still have some uncertainty about the exact track of this system.

Strong northeast winds will develop late Sunday over the Gulf of St. Lawrence with rough surf and high water levels along the Acadian coast and the Bay of Chaleur.

Hurricane Otto strikes Central America

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Heavy rain and flooding swept away bridges in Costa Rica, 25 Nov 2016 (Reuters)

Otto has become the strongest storm so late in the Atlantic hurricane season to make landfall.

Otto struck the coast of Nicaragua and Costa Rica as a category 2 hurricane but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm as it weakens in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Forecasters say exceptionally high sea surface temperatures of around 29 C added extra fuel to the storm which delivered a month’s worth of rain in a few hours.

Officials say the death toll was nine but could have been higher if the storm had hit major population centres.