Science & Environment

Record-Breaking Downpours Along Canada’s Atlantic Coast Flood Nova Scotia

HALIFAX, Nova Scotia (AP) — An unusually lengthy procession of intense thunderstorms dumped file quantities of rain throughout a large swath of Canada’s Atlantic-coast province of Nova Scotia over the previous two days, inflicting flash flooding, street washouts and energy outages.

Torrential downpours started on Friday afternoon throughout the Halifax area, dumping greater than 200 millimeters of rain in some areas. The port metropolis sometimes receives about 90-100 mm of rain throughout a median July.

Based on radar estimates and unofficial observations, Environment Canada stated on Saturday that some areas might have acquired greater than 300 mm in 24 hours. Radar maps present the heaviest rainfall extending alongside the province’s southwestern shore to a degree north of Halifax.

Widespread flooding has additionally been reported in Lunenberg County, which is west of the Halifax area.

On Friday evening, water ranges rose so quick within the Bedford space that volunteers with Halifax Search and Rescue had been utilizing small boats to rescue individuals from inundated properties.

In the Hammonds Plains space, northwest of the town, flooding washed out driveways and the shoulders of many roads.

That’s the identical space the place the place 151 properties and companies had been destroyed by a wildfire that started on May 28, forcing evacuations that affected 16,000 residents. And for a lot of the previous week, the Halifax space has been sweltering below an motionless dome of humidity — a uncommon occasion so near the coast.

It was solely final fall that post-tropical storm Fiona descended on the Atlantic area, killing three individuals, flattening scores of properties and knocking out energy to greater than 600,000 properties and companies. Fiona was the most expensive climate occasion within the area’s historical past, inflicting greater than 800 million Canadian {dollars} ($604 million) in insured harm.

“It’s pretty obvious that the climate is changing — from Fiona last year to the wildfires in the spring and now flooding in the summer,” Halifax Mayor Mike Savage stated.

“We’re getting storms that used to be considered one-in-50-year events … pretty regularly,” he added.

While the official statistics have but to be recorded, it’s believed the Halifax area has not seen this stage of rainfall since Aug. 16, 1971, when hurricane Beth made landfall close to the jap tip of mainland Nova Scotia after which roared over Cape Breton. At that point, virtually 250 mm of rain fell on the Halifax space, inflicting widespread flooding and harm.

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