More than 53,000 utility customers were still in the dark Saturday morning amid an icy storm that has brought prolonged periods of freezing rain, ice pellets, rain and snowfall to Nova Scotia.
Freezing rain warnings were still in effect for parts of southern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton.
Environment Canada said the extended period of freezing rain, which began Friday, was expected to end Saturday morning over mainland Nova Scotia and western Cape Breton. It will end over eastern Cape Breton this afternoon.
Nova Scotia Power crews were working through the night to restore power. As of 8:30 a.m. local time Saturday, there were more than 53,000 customers still without power.
50,000 customers in the dark across Nova Scotia, as of 6am Saturday morning. <br>A look at the outage map leaves little doubt, as to where the heaviest ice accretion from freezing rain as been during this ice storm. <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/nsstorm?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#nsstorm</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/CBCNS?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@CBCNS</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/WKNDMornings?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@WKNDMornings</a> <a href=”https://t.co/Y3JNIdhrKJ”>pic.twitter.com/Y3JNIdhrKJ</a>
The power outages began on Friday morning, as a mixture of snow, rain, freezing rain and ice pellets swept through parts of the province.
CBC meteorologist Ryan Snoddon said as the storm departs from west to east on Saturday, increasing northwesterly winds would usher in cooler temperatures, as well as lingering flurries.
Snoddon said winds are expected to gust to 40 km/h for most of the province and could gust up to 60 km/h near north-facing coastlines, which could lead to more power outages if ice-coated trees are downed onto power lines.
On Friday, Nova Scotia Power storm lead Sean Borden said the outages were mostly due to ice buildup on trees, and icy roads were also proving to be a big challenge for crews.
Some recreational centres and businesses were delaying opening on Saturday. Halifax Regional Municipality tweeted Saturday morning that the George Dixon Centre in the city’s north end will open as an emergency shelter for those without housing starting at 9 p.m.