'First real big one': Atlantic Canada hammered by winter storm

Much of Newfoundland remains under wind and blizzard warnings as a winter storm makes its way through Atlantic Canada.

Temperatures in St.

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John's inched above zero on Saturday morning, but Environment Canada issued a wind warning for the region.

According to the warning, winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour are expected to hit the city with enough strength to damage buildings and toss items in the air.

"We're a bit of a sloppy mess here in St. John's this morning," NTV meteorologist Eddie Sheerr told CTV News Channel on Saturday. "We saw about 10 centimetres of snow here yesterday, followed by some heavy freezing rain and just some rain overnight. And now temperatures are actually quite mild."

Elsewhere on the island, the snow is expected to continue to fall throughout the day on Saturday.

Environment Canada issued blizzard warnings for multiple areas on Saturday, including Gander, N.L., and Grand Falls, N.L.

"Blizzard conditions with gusty winds and visibility frequently near zero in snow and blowing snow are expected or occurring," an agency warning said. "Travel is expected to be extremely hazardous."

Sheerr said some regions already accumulated upwards of 30 to 35 centimetres of snow overnight on Friday, and that the precipitation is expected to continue into Saturday afternoon and evening.

"I'm forecasting amounts closing in on 50 centimetres in some of those spots by the time the day comes to an end and the storm comes to an end," he said.

After a comparatively dry winter, Sheerr described the storm as the "first real big one" in many parts of the island.

In the rest of Atlantic Canada, the meteorologist said the worst of the storm appears to be over.

Friday night saw dozens of car accidents but only minor injuries. Several thousand homes and businesses lost power, but most locations were back on the grid by Saturday.

Our crews and staff worked throughout the night on restoration efforts. We have a full complement of crews working to restore power this AM.

— Nova Scotia Power (@nspowerinc) January 30, 2016

"(Saturday is) going to be a good clean-up day," Sheerr said.



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