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Hurricane Matthew: What impact will it have on Canada?

Powerful Hurricane Matthew seen from the International Space Station

As Hurricane Matthew slammed into Haiti and Jamaica on Tuesday, Americans and Canadians are keeping a close eye on the storm.

READ MORE: Hurricane Matthew makes landfall in Haiti as devastating Category 4 storm

Matthew formed as a tropical storm on Sept. 28 and quickly developed into a hurricane by the following day.

As of 2 p.m. Tuesday, the hurricane was a Category 4 storm, with maximum sustained winds of 230 km/h. Hurricane warnings have been issued for Haiti, the Bahamas, and parts of Cuba.

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

The National Hurricane Center out of Miami, Fla., is closely monitoring the powerful storm. As of Tuesday, the weather agency had forecast the storm to hit parts of Florida as a major hurricane (Category 3 or higher) by Friday. The hurricane is expected to then weaken before heading into the Carolinas and continuing to move northeast.

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The National Hurricane Center is forecasting Matthew to remain a hurricane into Sunday as it heads up the northeast coast, off the coast of New York. The storm is likely to have an impact on Canada early next week with high winds and heavy rain affecting the Maritimes.

VIDEO GALLERY: Hurricane Matthew

As the storm continues its northeasterly trek, the Canadian Hurricane Centre is also keeping a close eye on Matthew.

“Matthew is expected to move northward along the eastern seaboard approaching the Maritimes this Thanksgiving weekend. At this time, it is too early to be specific regarding the precise track of the storm,” the centre said in a statement on its website.

“We encourage the public to closely monitor the evolution of the forecast over the next few days. As the weekend approaches there will be greater confidence in the specifics of the storm.”

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The forecast track for Hurricane Matthew. The centre of the storm could take it anywhere within the cone.
The forecast track for Hurricane Matthew. The centre of the storm could take it anywhere within the cone. National Hurricane Center

Speaking with Global News today, Dennis Feltgen from the National Hurricane Center said that it’s too early to forecast any impact on Canada at the moment, due to the “tremendous margin of error” this far out.

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“But yes, we’re watching it. Definitely.”

Meanwhile Tropical Storm Nicole has developed east of Matthew in the Atlantic Ocean. It is not forecast to impact any land within the next few days.

Follow Globalnews.ca for updates on Hurricane Matthew’s possible impact on Canada.

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