How Hurricane Joaquin may affect Canada

WATCH ABOVE: East Coast cities, towns preparing for Hurricane Joaquin as it pounds Bahamas

All eyes are on Hurricane Joaquin as it reached major hurricane status on Thursday.

The Category 4 hurricane formed as a tropical depression on Sept. 27, strengthening to a tropical storm 24 hours later and eventually to a hurricane on Wednesday. It reached major hurricane status less than 24 hours later.

The Saffiir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale
The Saffir-Simpson scale

Joaquin is producing winds of 210 km/h and moving southwestward at 9 km/h.

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The storm is expected to affect the eastern United States from about Virginia up to New England where it is forecast to be a tropical storm.

WATCH: Joaquin becomes a Category 4 hurricane over the Bahamas

If it does track in that direction, it could affect parts of southern Ontario and Quebec. However, Joaquin is a tough one to forecast.

“With this particular storm, uncertainty beyond 48 hours is higher,” said Bob Robichaud, warning preparedness meteorologist with the Canadian Hurricane Centre in Halifax. “There may be no impact whatsoever.”

READ MORE: Hurricane Joaquin churns up Joaquin Phoenix memes on social media

The determining factor will be whether or not the storm begins a turn to the north. If it turns to the north — which is what it looks like it may do — it could either affect Atlantic Canada or track offshore.

“Until it makes that turn to the north, we won’t know with any degree of certainty,” Robichaud said.

The forecast of Hurricane Joaquin. The cone is the probable path of the storm centre.
The forecast of Hurricane Joaquin. The cone is the probable path of the storm centre. NOAA

However, as the days progress, meteorologists will have a better idea where the system is headed.

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Robichaud said that the CHC is keeping a close eye on Joaquin after New Brunswick experienced heavy rains on Wednesday. The system brought the same heavy rain to Nova Scotia on Thursday.

“The last thing we want is another [system] coming up behind the one we just got,” Robichaud said.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre expects to have a better forecast by Saturday.