A large swath of Canada’s Atlantic coast is under hurricane warnings as Category 4 Hurricane Fiona continues its northward push, with forecasters warning the massive hurricane will be a “historic storm for the eastern Canada” after devastating islands like Puerto Rico.
Fiona is about 180 miles west of Bermuda with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center, maintaining an intensity it has now maintained for 48 hours.
Forecasters said hurricane-like conditions are likely in Bermuda over the next few hours before the storm moves away on a track east of Nova Scotia.
Hurricane warnings are in effect for much of the Nova Scotia coastline from Hubbards to Brule, as well as the province of Prince Edward Island and the west coast of Newfoundland from Parson’s Pond to Francois.
Technically, Fiona is not expected to be a hurricane by the time it makes landfall in Nova Scotia on Saturday morning after transitioning to an extratropical system, but forecasts of winds in excess of 100 mph and torrential rains of up to 10 inches triggered hurricane warnings. However.
“Similar cyclones of this nature have caused structural damage to buildings,” Canadian government forecasters said in a statement. “Construction sites can be particularly vulnerable. Wind impacts will likely be enhanced by tree foliage, which could lead to prolonged and widespread utility outages.”
Electricity remains cut off to more than 60% of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Fiona hit the island earlier this week. Significant damage was also reported in neighboring regions such as the Dominican Republic and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The storm passed near Puerto Rico nearly five years to the day after Hurricane Maria destroyed the island, causing damage that many residents are still recovering from. President Joe Biden said Thursday he had authorized “100%” federal funding to cover the island’s storm response over the next month. At least seven people died as a result of the storm, including four in Puerto Rico.
Tropical Depression Nine formed in the central Caribbean Sea early Friday morning. The system is worth watching for US interests since long-term models suggest it could threaten the Gulf Coast in the coming week.
No hurricane warnings have been issued for US coastal areas this hurricane season.
Hurricane Fiona reaches Category 4 strength as new tropical threats brew in the Atlantic (Forbes)
Nearly a million people still without power in Puerto Rico after Fiona killed 7 (Forbes)