While some uncertainty remains about the exact path Hurricane Lee will take through the region this weekend, there’s little doubt that the storm will impact the Maritimes.
The large-scale and slow-moving storm is looking likely to bring rain, gusty winds and pounding surf, as well as the potential for storm surge.
The latest guidance continues to weaken Lee as it tracks northward over the next few days into an area of increasing wind shear and cooler ocean temperatures.
That said, Lee is still expected to remain near Category 1 strength as it moves into the Maritimes on Saturday. The storm is then expected to transition to post-tropical as it slowly moves through the region later Saturday and into Sunday, while continuing to bring tropical storm-force winds.
That transition to a post-tropical low means that the bands of rain and strongest winds will spread out from the centre of the storm and encompass a larger area. This will bring the risk of more widespread power outages, with the trees still in full leaf.
As the storm track becomes more clear and the models come into better agreement over the next day or so, we’ll get a clearer picture as to which parts of the Maritimes will see the heaviest rainfall and which will see the strongest winds.
We’ll also get a better handle on the storm surge potential and how it might line up with high tide.
Downpours on Thursday
Well ahead of Lee, tropical moisture streaming up and ahead of the storm will roll through the Maritimes on Thursday.
Scattered showers, heavy downpours and the risk of thunderstorms on Thursday and Thursday night will bring another risk of localized flash flooding. It will also add even more water to an already saturated ground before Lee arrives this weekend.