Sunday’s Maritime storm will pack a punch

Our incoming winter storm will pack a punch across the Martimes on Sunday and into Monday.

In New Brunswick, heavy snow could add up to more than 50 centimetres over central and northeast areas and significant freezing rain looks likely for areas in the southeast.

For Nova Scotia, heavy rain with the risk of localized flooding is on tap.

Couple that with snow, ice and rain with the gusty winds on the menu and some power outages are looking very likely for Sunday and into Monday. Here’s an update on how the storm will track in and what you can expect:

Sunday morning

The snow will spread in through the Sunday morning time period, arriving in the west early on and moving into Halifax, Moncton and Bathurst by mid-morning. For Nova Scotia, the snow will only persist for three or four hours (dropping near five centimetres), so by mid-morning we’ll likely see some mixing with ice pellets and freezing rain over southwest Nova Scotia.

Some parts of the Maritimes could see as much as 60 centimetres of snow Sunday. (Brian Higgins/CBC)

Sunday afternoon

By lunch time, the rest of the region will be into the snow and that mixing line will be approaching the Halifax region. Snow mixes with ice pellets, then switches to freezing rain and rain across the rest of Nova Scotia through the afternoon, while that icy mess moves into southern New Brunswick and P.E.I. by suppertime.

Sunday evening and overnight

Rain will be at times heavy, with increasing southerly winds gusting 80-100 km/h set for Nova Scotia and most of P.E.I. through the evening and overnight hours. Localized flooding certainly looks likely given the frozen ground and storm drains.

Meanwhile, an icy mess of ice pellets and freezing rain looks set to persist across southeastern New Brunswick. An area of extended and significant freezing rain looks possible and problematic for some folks in the southeast.

Nailing down exactly where the most intense freezing rain will be remains a tough call, but areas from Saint John to Moncton appear to be at the greatest risk.

The expected storm track for Sunday at noon. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

At bit further north, the Fredericton region will ride the mixing line with a hardy dose of snow mixing with ice pellets through the evening and overnight, and may even see some freezing rain at times. This should keep amounts closer to 30 centimetres, while higher snowfall totals are likely to the north and northeast where, at times, blizzard-like conditions can also be expected from Miramichi to Bathurst.

Monday

For Nova Scotia and P.E.I., the rain will clear from west to east through the morning. Any standing water won’t have much time to clear and evaporate as temperatures will fall through the day on Monday as the winds shift to westerly.

For the Halifax metro region, it appears temperatures will fall below freezing just in time for the afternoon commute. Drivers should prepare for icy roads.

In New Brunswick, the ice pellets and freezing rain in the south will mix back to light snow and flurries through the morning as the temperatures drop. In the north, the snow will taper to flurries through the morning hours.

Storm totals

I’ve made a few tweaks to my snow, ice and rain map today. Here are a couple of things to point out.

The expected storm track for Sunday at 9 p.m. (Ryan Snoddon/CBC)

The best chance of totals in the 40-to-60-centimetre range will be from Woodstock to Perth-Andover across to Miramichi, the Acadian Peninsula and the Campbellton region.

The best chance of rainfall totals higher than 50 millimetres will be over southwest Nova Scotia and up the Atlantic coastline including Halifax, and along the Fundy coastline of New Brunswick.

The highest uncertainty is over southeast New Brunswick where heavy snow, significant freezing rain look possible. Meanwhile, heavy rain is likely to fall right along the Fundy coastline.

Updates on Sunday

CBC meteorologist Tina Simpkin will be updating the storm on CBC radio on Sunday morning. Then at noon, she and Jay Scotland will join me for a Facebook Live where we’ll take your questions. You can watch that on any of the Maritime Facebook pages or at cbc.ca/ns. You can also keep track of the storm with the live weather blog below.

Follow the live blog

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