July 5, 2014 6:05 pm

Tens of thousands without power as post-tropical storm Arthur hits Maritimes

WATCH ABOVE: Halifax was spared from the torrential rain but not from the strong winds from post-tropical storm Arthur. Mayya Assouad has more on the damaging winds.

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Thousands of people across the Maritimes are without power Saturday as post-tropical storm Arthur hammers parts of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick as it makes its way through the region

More than 100,000 customers of Nova Scotia Power were without electricity according to the company’s website, which went offline shortly after 11 a.m. AT and has not yet returned. The outages stretched from Yarmouth to Halifax and into the Annapolis Valley.

Officials with the Canadian Hurricane Centre are predicting more rainfall for the already soaked areas of New Brunswick that will persist along with strong winds until Saturday evening.

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Arthur was downgraded from a hurricane to a post-tropical storm with sustained winds over 100 km/h, according to the Canadian Hurricane Centre.

In New Brunswick, the number of NB Power customers without electricity has surpassed 120,000 as of 6 p.m. AT — the most the province has seen in a decade — including more than 47,000 in Fredericton and 10,000 in both Miramichi and St. Stephen.

Live Blog: Updates from Global News reporters in the field

Hurricane Centre spokesman Chris Fogarty says the system slowed over Saint John and Fredericton while reaching its maximum post-tropical intensity.

Environment Canada measured wind gusts topping 116 km/h in the Halifax area, while more than 110 millimetres of rain drenched parts of New Brunswick.

Fogarty predicted the rain to eventually surpass the 150-millimetre mark in Saint Stephen, N.B., on the U.S. border.

Forecasters are predicting Prince Edward Island will experience the worst of the weather, though rainfall there is not expected to surpass New Brunswick.

Fredericton’s fire department is tweeting to warn residents of downed power lines and fallen trees as winds pick up across the area.

Stephen Hatt,  a meteorologist with the Canadian Hurricane Centre, says a tropical storm warning is in effect for all of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, as well as eastern and southern New Brunswick, which are expecting 100 – 150 millimetres of rain, enough to cause localized flooding.

WATCH: Fredericton gets pounded with high winds and rain from Arthur. Laura Brown reports.

READ MORE: What Hurricane Arthur will unleash on Atlantic Canada

The heavy rains and strong winds have also led to several cancellations at Halifax’s Stanfield Airport. The airport is asking travellers to check with their airline about delays and cancellations.

Country music singers Blake Shelton and Darius Rucker cancelled planned shows at a music festival in Cavendish, P.E.I. due to the storm.

Large rainfall amounts in New Brunswick led to flooding in some areas, including parts of Saint John.

“The rainfall rates are of particular concern since they could exceed 15 millimetres per hour during a period of several hours,” the Canadian Hurricane Centre said in an information statement released early Saturday morning. “These conditions could lead to local flooding of small rivers and creeks and possible road washouts.”

WATCH: Heavy rains and wind bring down a tree on Hildebrand crescent in Fredericton 

Meteorologist Bob Richaud said although Arthur’s status has been downgraded, the winds will still be close to hurricane strength.

Robichaud said while New Brunswick will get the most rain, Nova Scotia will experience the strongest winds. The latest storm track from the hurricane centre had Arthur sweeping across much of mainland Nova Scotia before heading to Newfoundland.

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Arthur, the first named storm of the Atlantic season, made landfall in the U.S. late Thursday in North Carolina prompting a hurricane warning for much of the coast.

The warning prompted thousands of vacationers and residents celebrating Independence Day to leave parts of the state’s popular but flood-prone Outer Banks.

Much of the North Carolina coast was under a hurricane warning as the National Hurricane Center in the U.S. predicted Arthur would bring winds of up to 136 km/h to the state’s coastline.

*With files from the Canadian Press

© Shaw Media, 2014

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