Environment Canada has issued a number of public alerts across the Maritimes as the first major winter storm of 2022 is set to land on Friday.
The system could bring up to 30 centimetres of snow across the region.
In New Brunswick, snow will begin to fall in the southern half of the province Friday morning “and become heavy, at times, by Friday afternoon.” The snow will be accompanied by maximum wind gusts of 60 to 80 km/h.
“Strong northeasterly to northerly winds will develop later in the day on Friday and in conjunction with the fresh snowfall will result in poor visibility in blowing snow,” Environment Canada said. “Conditions will improve Saturday morning.”
The weather agency noted that there is still some uncertainty on the exact track of the storm, which would impact snowfall amounts. “Confidence is highest that southern most areas will see the highest snowfall totals and strongest winds,” it said.
Snowfall amounts in southern New Brunswick will likely range between 15 and 30 centimetres.
In Nova Scotia, snow is expected to begin near midday on Friday and will become heavy at times later in the afternoon. Snowfall will persist into Friday night, before gradually easing from west to east Saturday morning.
Central and northern mainland Nova Scotia, as well as the Annapolis Valley and the northern half of Cape Breton island, could see 20 to 30 or more centimetres of snow and wind gusts of 80 km/h or more.
Environment Canada said in the eastern parts of Nova Scotia and parts of the Atlantic coast, there are indications that there could be a mix or changeover to rain, “whereas inland regions could remain entirely snow.”
“If this scenario materializes there could be drastically varying snowfall accumulations between inland regions — which could reach or exceed 15 cm — and coastal regions which could receive much less snow,” it said.
“Even a slight deviation in the track of the storm could impact snowfall amounts in these areas. Regardless, strong north to northeast winds will accompany this system and could gust to warning criteria of 90 km/h or higher Friday night.”
Conditions in Nova Scotia are expected to improve near noon on Saturday.
Environment Canada also issued rainfall warnings for Halifax and Guysborough counties, where periods of rain, heavy at times, will taper to showers early Thursday afternoon. It said 25 to 35 millimetres of rain is expected.