Some Nova Scotians on 3rd day without power since Friday's storm

·3 min read
A person is seen walking through Friday's winter storm in Halifax. More than 66,000 Nova Scotia Power customers lost power Friday due to the high winds and heavy snow. (Craig Paisley/CBC - image credit)
A person is seen walking through Friday's winter storm in Halifax. More than 66,000 Nova Scotia Power customers lost power Friday due to the high winds and heavy snow. (Craig Paisley/CBC - image credit)

Some Nova Scotians are still without electricity Sunday after a winter storm knocked out power to thousands of homes and businesses on Friday.

The first sigificant nor'easter of 2022 dropped from five to 45 centimetres of wet snow across the province, with wind gusts between 70-100 km/h.

The high winds and heavy snow knocked out power to more than 66,000 Nova Scotia Power customers by Friday evening.

The number of outages dropped steadily Saturday, but about 10,000 were still waiting for restoration late in the day.

Most of the prolonged outages have been in communities along the Fundy Shore and in the Annapolis Valley, which received significant snowfall.

Jackie Foster, a spokesperson with Nova Scotia Power, said there are about 250 people working in the field to restore power to those areas on Sunday.

"The challenges are really around access so it might be road conditions and crews are having a slower time getting to the area to access the damage," Foster said Sunday. "The deep snow has also posed some challenges so those are some of the things our crews are facing today."

As of 7 p.m. AT Sunday, about 2,300 Nova Scotia Power customers were still without electricity.

A new outage of about 1,300 customers north of Port Hawkesbury was not related to the storm, NSP said, and crews were on site repairing equipment.

Brenda Thompson, who lives just south of Annapolis Royal, was among those with no power late Sunday morning.

Thompson said losing power has become so routine in her rural area that she's now an expert.

"We have to be prepared for days and days and days at a time with no power, every time we have any kind of snowstorm or hurricane or windstorm," she said. "It's just constant out here in rural Nova Scotia."

Despite being prepared with a wood stove, head lamps, candles and battery packs, she said the common outages become a "bit of a pain" after 24 hours in the dark.

"You've got other things going on in your life. You've got to get on with your business. You've got to go to work. You've got to travel down the road and all this. You've got to get on with life," she said.

Thompson said she appreciates the work Nova Scotia Power crews are doing on the ground, but she's starting to get frustrated.

"They keep saying, 'Oh, you'll have it [back] by this time,' and we just know that half the time that's not going to happen so we just carry on."

Foster asked for patience as crews continue to work through the outages Sunday.

"Our crews are working as hard as they can to make this happen as quickly and as safely as possible. We recognize the challenges. We've moved in more resources and it really is all hands on deck."

Craig Paisley/CBC
Craig Paisley/CBC

According to Nova Scotia Power's outage map, electricity is expected to be restored at most locations by the end of the day.

Food deliveries delayed

The recent winter storm has also led to delays in food deliveries across the region.

A few Halifax grocery stores had empty produce shelves on Sunday afternoon and at least one had posted a sign attributing the shortage to storm delays.

Jean-Marc Picard of the Atlantic Provinces Trucking Association said delivery trucks would have been pulled off the road when Friday's snowstorm swept through.

"They usually wait until the roads are better and the conditions are better which obviously can cause delays. And if there's delays in certain loads, well it's going to impact the next loads as well," Picard said Sunday.

"It's a trickle-down effect."

Picard said deliveries should be back on track by Monday but the ongoing truck driver shortage could make delays longer than usual.

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