Thousands still without power after winter storm sweeps Nova Scotia

·2 min read
Some areas in eastern Nova Scotia, including Cape Breton, are still under a winter storm warning as of early Saturday. (Nova Scotia Power/Twitter - image credit)
Some areas in eastern Nova Scotia, including Cape Breton, are still under a winter storm warning as of early Saturday. (Nova Scotia Power/Twitter - image credit)

Thousands of homes and businesses were without power Saturday after a powerful winter storm swept Nova Scotia.

There were still nearly 10,000 Nova Scotia Power customers around the province waiting for restoration into Saturday evening.

The first nor'easter of 2022 started Friday, dropping from five to 45 centimetres of wet snow across the province throughout the day and overnight, with wind gusts between 70-100 km/h.

CBC meteorologist Ryan Snoddon said initial reports show that northern parts of the province received the most snow, with 45 centimetres falling in Wentworth.

By Friday evening, those high winds and heavy snow had already knocked out power to about 66,000 Nova Scotia Power customers.

The number of outages dropped steadily Saturday, but there were still about 16,000 customers without electricity across the province at 3:30 p.m. AT, according to Nova Scotia Power's outage map.

Most of the outages were located in the Halifax Regional Municipality, the Annapolis Valley and areas along the Bay of Fundy coast.

Matt Drover, a storm lead with Nova Scotia Power, said about 400 workers are restoring power Saturday.

Craig Paisley/CBC
Craig Paisley/CBC

He said crews have found a few broken power poles but the majority of the outages were caused by heavy snow weighing down tree branches onto power lines.

"The most challenging aspect has been travel. In some areas, it is slow going with all the snow on the road and safety is our number one priority ... but they're doing everything they can to quickly restore power for all customers," he said.

Drover said he doesn't expect more weather-related outages but there could be some minor outages as areas are being restored.

He said communities would be restored first, followed by streets and individual properties.

According to a news release Saturday, crews had restored electricity by 11 a.m. to 84 per cent of all customers who lost service during the storm.

"I want to thank everybody across the province for being patient. It was definitely a major storm and we're working as safely and quickly as we can to get your power back on," he said.

He said he expects most of the outages will be restored by 11 p.m. Saturday.

Closures, cancellations

According to Nova Scotia's provincial highway map, the Cobequid Toll plaza in Cumberland County was closed to traffic for several hours after it was shut down Friday during the storm. It reopened early Saturday.

Marine Atlantic has also cancelled several crossings between North Sydney and Port aux Basques and rescheduled them to late Saturday or Sunday due to the weather conditions.

Several flights out of the Halifax Stanfield International Airport were also cancelled Saturday morning due to the storm.

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