Hurricane Arthur moves north, on track to impact Atlantic Canada this weekend
Thursday, July 3, 2014, 8:06 AM - Arthur picked up hurricane status early Thursday, threatening parts of the U.S. east coast and Atlantic Canada later this week.
Forecasters say the storm is heading for North Carolina's Outer Banks, bringing winds up to 120 km/h with it.
People on Hatteras Island are being told they must evacuate, and since it's such a popular vacation spot, especially heading into the fourth of July holiday, local officials are not taking any chances.
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They're ordering people to leave during daylight hours before conditions deteriorate.
According to the U.S National Hurricane Center, the combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters.
"The highest water will occur along the immediate coast in areas of onshore flow," says the NHC. "The surge will be accompanied by large and damaging waves."
In addition to a powerful storm surge, strong winds and heavy rains are expected.
"Isolated tornadoes are also possible over portions of coastal North Carolina today," says the NHC.
The NHC predicts the storm will be off the coast of New England later Friday and eventually impact Canada's Maritime provinces.
"As of late Wednesday, computer models are in strong agreement on a likely hit by Arthur on Atlantic Canada. It appears the chances for a complete miss are dwindling rapidly," said The Weather Network's chief meteorologist Chris Scott. "Current timing suggests a Saturday impact for the Maritimes, with the storm affecting Newfoundland Saturday night into Sunday."
Although it's too early to predict which areas will be hardest hit, forecasters say Arthur is expected to bring significant wind and rain to Atlantic Canada this weekend.
Upwards of 100 mm of rain is possible through Sunday morning.
"Rainfall will be heavy with current indications showing the heaviest rain falling through New Brunswick, western Nova Scotia and western PEI. Depending on the forward speed of the system, some localized flooding is possible in these areas," says Scott. "Assuming wind gusts are near hurricane strength, significant power outages are possible, particularly across Nova Scotia."
"A trough of low pressure will be moving eastward from the Great Lakes, guiding Arthur toward Atlantic Canada," adds the CHC. "The nature of the trough approaching from the Great Lakes will make all the difference in Arthur's intensity, track and structure as it moves toward our region."