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Major storm to slam P.E.I. with snow, 100 km/h winds Thursday

Michelle Trainor of Charlottetown gets in her daily walk around Victoria Park in Charlottetown on Wednesday. Islanders are bracing for a major winter storm to begin pounding the province Thursday afternoon. Strong winds and heavy precipitation is forecast to last into Friday.
Michelle Trainor of Charlottetown gets in her daily walk around Victoria Park in Charlottetown on Wednesday. Islanders are bracing for a major winter storm to begin pounding the province Thursday afternoon. Strong winds and heavy precipitation is forecast to last into Friday. - Brian McInnis

Major, significant and intense are three words Environment Canada meteorologist Linda Libby used to describe the winter storm expected to slam into P.E.I. Thursday.

“It is one of the deeper storms we’ve had in a while,’’ Libby said Wednesday. “It is one of those storms that rapidly intensifies, so that usually has implications in terms of the wind and implications for the storm surge as well. (There will) certainly be blowing conditions.’’

Winds out of a variety of directions could gust as high as 90 or 100 km/h. There is a wide range in regards to the amount of snow that might fall. Kings County could see less than 10 centimetres of snow while parts of the province could be hit with 30 centimetres or more in a worst-case scenario.

Libby said the province will generally see 15-25 centimetres before all is said and done.

“All that cold air that’s been around the continent, that is actually part of the reason why this storm is going to be so nasty. It’s that contrast between warm and cold air. That’s what generates the energy that feeds these storms.’’
-Linda Libby

As for the timeline, the snow is expected to start around noon Thursday, with conditions worsening around mid to late afternoon.

The snow is expected to turn to rain in Kings County around 10 p.m. and move west to Prince County by 2 a.m. Friday. 

Precipitation is expected to cease by 8 a.m. Friday to be followed by onshore flurries. The winds are expected to gradually diminish by Friday afternoon.

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Libby said they are looking at elevated water levels for P.E.I., but was not sure whether it will warrant a storm surge warning.

“All that cold air that’s been around the continent, that is actually part of the reason why this storm is going to be so nasty. It’s that contrast between warm and cold air. That’s what generates the energy that feeds these storms.’’

Libby hopes people did their usual stocking up on groceries and gas to get ready for it.

“You’re not going to be wanting to go out in it.’’

 

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