Atlantic Canada faces long-duration threat from snow, ice, heavy rain

Atlantic Canada faces long-duration threat from snow, ice, heavy rain
Atlantic Canada faces long-duration threat from snow, ice, heavy rain

Southerly flow will transport an abundance of tropical moisture straight to the East Coast in the coming days, combining with a complicated atmospheric setup to spark a long-duration mix of rain, snow, and ice for the Atlantic provinces.

The first system we’ll deal with is the same storm responsible for bringing disruptive snow to parts of Ontario and Quebec on Friday. Snow won’t be far behind for the Maritimes on Friday night and Saturday.

We’ll have to look ahead to several additional rounds of precipitation moving into next week.

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A dayslong spell of unsettled weather is in the cards for Atlantic Canada as an upper-level trough settles over the region. This feature aloft will kick off multiple systems that will each bring a round of precipitation to the Atlantic provinces.

ATLPWAT
ATLPWAT

These systems will be nebulous in nature, though, with one round blending into the next in a way that makes it difficult to discern each individual system. Residents will experience this setup more like rounds of precipitation as opposed to classic storms that have a defined beginning and end.

The most immediate concern for the Maritimes is the low-pressure system that’s affecting Ontario and Quebec.

Snow and rain from this storm will begin pushing into the Maritimes overnight Thursday into Friday morning, first arriving in New Brunswick before spreading east over Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Warmer air in place will make this mostly a rainy affair for Nova Scotia, eastern Prince Edward Island, and southern New Brunswick, where up to 100 mm of rain is possible through Saturday across the hardest-hit areas.

ATLRain
ATLRain

New Brunswick will bear the brunt of the snow from this approaching system, with 40-50 cm of snow possible for northern sections of the province into Saturday morning. Totals will gradually tick down to more manageable levels the farther south one goes, with 15-25 cm expected around Fredericton and Moncton.

A swath of freezing rain is possible for portions of New Brunswick as precipitation switches back and forth between rain and snow across the area.

The combined threat of heavy snow and freezing rain prompted Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) to issue winter storm warnings for much of New Brunswick.

“Consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improve,” ECCC said in its warning. “Surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots may become difficult to navigate due to accumulating snow.”

ATLSnow
ATLSnow

Additionally, a snowfall warning is in effect for Prince County and Queens County on Prince Edward Island. Folks on the western half of the island could see 15-25 cm of snow through Friday night, with lower totals on the eastern half of the island.

Precipitation will ease across the Maritimes overnight Friday into early Saturday morning.

Across the gulf, much of western Newfoundland finds itself under a winter storm warning as a messy combination of rain, freezing rain, and snow threatens to create hazardous travel conditions across parts of the island Friday afternoon through Saturday morning.

ATLBoundary
ATLBoundary

Looking beyond this system, a boundary setting up across the Maritimes and Newfoundland will serve as the focus for additional rounds of precipitation beginning Saturday night and arriving in waves through early next week.

Precipitation forming along the boundary will encounter a complicated mix of temperatures throughout the atmosphere, allowing for the whole spectrum of rain, freezing rain, ice pellets, and snow to fall across the region.

Prepare for continued travel disruptions through early next week, and continue checking back through the weekend for the latest details on the snow and ice threats across Atlantic Canada in the coming days.

Stay with The Weather Network for the latest on conditions across Atlantic Canada.