Storm now considered a weather bomb, blizzard warning issued

Published on March 25, 2014
A pair of HRM snowplows work to keep the Hammonds Plains Road clear during near blizzard conditions in December.
Metro Halifax/Jeff Harper

HALIFAX - Environment Canada meterologists now say Wednesday’s storm won’t just be bad – it will be a weather bomb.

A low-pressure system is designated as a weather bomb when it intensifies by at least 24 millibars within 24 hours – and meterologist Tracey Talbot said that’s well within reach.

“It’s intensifying quite rapidly, so for sure it fits that definition,” she said Monday.

The storm remains on track to hit Nova Scotia early Wednesday morning, bringing snow and strong winds. Periods of rain are expected for places east of Halifax.

A blizzard warning was issued for Halifax on Tuesday morning, with the system calling for heavy snow and widespread blowing snow.

“There’s going to be a lot of snow and blowing snow, so it’s going to be quite the mess,” she said, adding that snowfall amounts from 25 to 40 centimetres are expected.

Talbot said forecasters are more concerned about the strong winds associated with the system, which could cause dangerous storm surges. A storm surge warning is also in place for all of HRM.

“Up in through the Gulf of St. Lawrence and through the Northumberland Strait, that storm surge will probably be peaking later on on Wednesday afternoon into Thursday morning, and that could occur at the high tide point,” she said. “There could be some concerns, especially with the ice pack that’s up there right now, rafting onto the coast.”

Talbot said it’s unusual, but not atypical, for Nova Scotia to get a snowstorm after the start of spring.

“Mother Nature I don’t think has got the memo,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be the dead of winter, obviously, springtime we get these intense storms too.”