Storm Watches: Storm Lee bears down on New England and Canada with hurricane-force winds, rain, dangerous surf

PORTLAND: Storm Lee hurtled throughout the Atlantic on Saturday, threatening thousands and thousands of individuals in coastal New England and japanese Canada with hurricane-force winds, harmful surf and torrential rains.
Extreme circumstances have been predicted throughout elements of Massachusetts and Maine, and hurricane circumstances may hit the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, the place the storm, downgraded early Saturday from hurricane to post-tropical cyclone, was anticipated to make landfall later within the day.
The storm’s heart was about 185 miles (365 kilometers) southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and about 160 miles (355 kilometers) south-southeast of Eastport, Maine, at 8 a.m. EDT Saturday. It was transferring north at a quick clip of 25 mph (41 kph), with most sustained winds of 80 mph (129 kph).
Hurricane watches have been in impact for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, whereas a tropical storm warning stretched from Westport, Massachusetts, to Nova Scotia.
States of emergency have been declared for Massachusetts and Maine, the nation’s most closely forested state, the place the bottom was saturated and bushes have been weakened by heavy summer time rains.
Utilities reported tens of 1000’s of shoppers with out energy from Maine to Nova Scotia.
There have been studies of bushes down in japanese Maine, in accordance with Todd Foisy, a Nationwide Climate Service meteorologist.
“We now have an extended option to go, and we’re already seeing downed bushes and energy outages,” Foisy mentioned Saturday.
Peak gusts are projected to be 70 mph (113 kph) on the coast in japanese Maine, however there might be gusts as much as 50 mph (80 kph) throughout a swath greater than 400 miles broad, from Maine’s Moosehead Lake eastward all the way in which into the ocean, he mentioned.
Cruise ships discovered refuge at berths in Portland, whereas lobstermen in Bar Harbor, Maine, and elsewhere pulled their pricey traps from the water and hauled their boats inland, leaving some harbors wanting like ghost cities on Friday.
Lee already lashed the US Virgin Islands, the Bahamas and Bermuda earlier than turning northward, and heavy swells have been more likely to trigger “life-threatening surf and rip present circumstances” within the UUSS. and Canada, in accordance with the hurricane heart.
Components of coastal Maine may see waves as much as 15 ft (4.5 meters) excessive crashing down, inflicting erosion and injury, and the robust gusts will trigger energy outages, mentioned Louise Fode, a Nationwide Climate Service meteorologist. As a lot as 5 inches (12 centimeters) of rain was forecast for japanese Maine, the place a flash flood watch was in impact.
However at the same time as they ready, New Englanders appeared largely unconcerned. In Maine, the place individuals are accustomed to damaging winter nor’easters, some brushed apart the approaching Lee as one thing akin to these storms, solely with out the snow.
“There’s going to be big white rollers coming in on high of 50- to 60-mph winds. It will be fairly entertaining,” Bar Harbor lobsterman Bruce Younger mentioned Friday. Nonetheless, he had his boat moved to the native airport, saying it is higher to be secure than sorry.
On Lengthy Island, business lobsterman Steve Practice completed hauling 200 traps out of the water on Friday. Practice, who can be a firefighter, was going to attend out the storm on the island in Casco Bay.
He was not involved about staying there within the storm. “Not one bit,” he mentioned.
In Canada, Ian Hubbard, a meteorologist for Setting and Local weather Change Canada and the Canadian Hurricane Centre, mentioned Lee will not be wherever close to as extreme because the remnants of Hurricane Fiona, which a yr in the past washed homes into the ocean, knocked out energy to most of two provinces and swept a lady into the ocean.
Nevertheless it was nonetheless a harmful storm. Kyle Leavitt, director of the New Brunswick Emergency Administration Group, urged residents to remain dwelling, saying, “Nothing good can come from testing the large waves and the way robust the wind really is.”
Harmful hurricanes are comparatively uncommon this far to the north. The Nice New England Hurricane of 1938 introduced gusts as excessive as 186 mph (300 kph) and sustained winds of 121 mph (195 kph) at Massachusetts’ Blue Hill Observatory. However there have been no storms that highly effective in recent times.
The area discovered the exhausting method with Hurricane Irene in 2011 that injury is not all the time confined to the coast. Downgraded to a tropical storm, Irene nonetheless triggered greater than $800 million in injury in Vermont.

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