Storm Fiona causes 'terrifying' destruction on Canada's east coast

A fallen tree lies on a crushed pickup truck following the passing of Hurricane Fiona, later downgraded to a post-tropical storm, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada September 24, 2022. (Photo: Reuters)

Strong storm Yesterday, hurricane-force winds from Fiona blasted over eastern Canada, prompting evacuations, bringing down trees and powerlines, and turning several homes on the coast to "just a pile of rubble in the ocean."

The center of the storm, which has been downgraded to Post-Tropical Cyclone Fiona, is currently in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and losing strength, according to the US National Hurricane Center (NHC). The NHC canceled tropical storm and hurricane warnings for the region.

Port aux Basques, a town with a population of 4,067 located on the southwestern coast of Newfoundland, suffered the brunt of the storm's fury.

The mayor was compelled to proclaim a state of emergency and evacuate flooded and washed-out road sections of the city.

Multiple residences and an apartment complex were dragged out to sea, said Rene Roy, editor-in-chief of Wreckhouse Weekly in Port aux Basques.

"This is hands down the most terrifying thing I've ever seen in my life," Roy remarked, describing several homes as "just a pile of rubble in the ocean right now."

"A certain apartment building no longer exists. There are entire abandoned streets "he added. CBC stated that police are investigating whether a woman was washed out to sea.

"We've gone through a very difficult morning," Button said in a Facebook video, adding that the evacuations were complete. "We will survive this. I assure you we will overcome this obstacle."

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with members of a government emergency response team yesterday morning, and subsequently told reporters that the military would be dispatched to assist with the cleanup.

Trudeau stated, "We're seeing reports of significant damage in the region, and recovery is going to be a big effort," We will be by your side every step of the journey.

Trudeau had postponed his Saturday departure to Japan to attend the funeral of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, but he has now announced that he will not make the trip. Instead, he stated that he would visit the region as soon as possible.

Trudeau stated that federal help for Nova Scotia has already been approved and that additional requests are anticipated.

Hurricane Fiona, which struck Puerto Rico and other parts of the Caribbean over a week ago, killed at least eight people and knocked out power for nearly all of Puerto Rico's 3.3 million residents during a scorching heat wave.

Fiona made landfall between Canso and Guysborough, Nova Scotia, where the Canadian Hurricane Centre recorded the lowest barometric pressure of any storm in the country's history.

According to Ian Hubbard, a meteorologist at the Canadian Hurricane Centre, Fiona appears to have lived up to the anticipation that it would be a "historical" storm.

"It did look like it had the potential to break the all-time record in Canada, and it looks like it did," he added. We are not yet out of the woods.

Storms are common in the region and normally pass quickly, but Fiona is forecast to affect a vast area.

Although scientists have not yet confirmed if climate change influenced Fiona's intensity or behavior, there is compelling evidence that these destructive storms are becoming more intense.

Hundreds of thousands without power

Approximately 69 percent, or 360,720 people, were without power in Nova Scotia, while 95 percent, or more than 82,000, were without power on Prince Edward Island, according to utility companies. Multiple road closures have been reported by authorities in the region. Additionally, the location has a patchy mobile phone service.

Rogers Communications Inc acknowledged the interruptions caused by Fiona and stated that crews would strive to restore service "as quickly as possible."

The island's potato farms, which are in the harvest season and produce more than a fifth of Canada's potatoes, were expected to be affected by the storm, Hubbard added.

"This morning we all woke up to some very scary scenes, roads washed down, uprooted trees, mail boxes where they are not supposed to be," Darlene Compton, the deputy premier of Prince Edward Island, told reporters, adding that it had been a "nerve wracking"

Elaine Keene, whose vessel escaped damage at the Shearwater Yacht Club in Halifax, reported that eleven vessels sank and four were grounded.

Premier Francois Legault of Quebec and officials from Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia concurred that no injuries or fatalities have been reported.

As the storm moved north, it diminished slightly. The NHC reported that at about 5 p.m. in Halifax (2100 GMT), the storm was 80 miles (130 kilometers) northwest of Port aux Basques over the Gulf of St. Lawrence with maximum sustained winds of 70 miles per hour (110 kilometers per hour).

Publish : 2022-09-25 10:01:00

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