Maritimers' 2nd winter storm in a week shuts businesses, schools as roads deteriorate

Another powerful low-pressure dumped more snow on the Maritimes less than two days after a record-breaking blizzard.

Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and P.E.I. get added 15 to 30 cm just two days after record-breaking blizzard

Maritimers looked out their windows to see more snow, strong winds and freezing rain on Thursday, less than two days after a record-breaking blizzard paralyzed the region. 

Environment Canada issued winter storm warnings for Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and P.E.I. Many schools, businesses and other services shut down or delayed opening as road conditions deteriorated Thursday morning. 

The current system arrived on the heels of a two-day blizzard that dumped 30 to 80 centimetres of snow on the region. Winds in excess of 100 km/h worsened the latest storm's impact, leaving thousands temporarily without power. 

On Thursday, Maritimers chose to hunker down or face poor travel conditions on their way to work. 

More snow, gusty winds

The storm began Wednesday night and continued into Thursday afternoon. Environment Canada said it will move northeast across the region and will track west of Cape Breton. 

Areas along the Atlantic coastline were expected to get between 10 and 15 centimetres of snow. Digby, the Annapolis Valley, Hants, Cumberland, Colchester, and Pictou got between 15 and 30 centimetres.

The snow is expected to taper to flurries by the afternoon or evening. North winds will still have gusts of between 50 to 80 km/h. Freezing rain was reported in some areas. 

Nova Scotia Power spokeswoman Beverley Ware says crews are stationed across the province. The number of customers without electricity fluctuated Thursday. 

Nova Scotia's Transportation department says plowing is underway in Halifax, Queens County, Lunenburg County, and Cape Breton County.

A winter storm is dumping more snow across the Maritimes on Thursday. Residents in New Brunswick, P.E.I. (pictured) and Nova Scotia are being advised to stay home. (Kevin Yarr/CBC)

Shared winter storm warnings

Environment Canada issued winter storm warnings for southern, central and eastern New Brunswick and a special weather statement for the rest of the province.

All of P.E.I. is under a winter storm warning. This storm is their eighth in four days. Environment Canada has issued a special statement warning about ice rafting — large pieces of sea ice forced past the shoreline.

Total snowfall amounts could hit 30 cm Thursday with northwest winds gusting to 80 km/h in the southeast. 0:34

Travel not recommended

Saint John and Moncton transit services have been pulled due to road conditions. Visibility is also reduced, including on the Trans-Canada Highway between Longs Creek and Moncton.

Marine Atlantic cancelled its Thursday crossings, the Tancook Island ferry has been suspended and the Halifax airport had a handful of delays and cancellations. 

Halifax Transit is running, but several routes are on the snow plan. 

Freezing rain started to fall in Halifax around 9:30 a.m. (Craig Paisley/CBC)

Cpl. Jennifer Clarke of Nova Scotia RCMP said there was a two-vehicle collision on Highway 103 near Exit 5A, and also several collisions on Highway102 inbound between Exits 2 and 4. 

While not as powerful as Monday's blizzard, Thursday's snowfall will add to its remnants. Snowbanks, in excess of several metres in some areas, have narrowed roads and buried sidewalks.

On Tuesday, a statement posted to the Halifax website stated that sidewalk clearing could take up to two weeks. The city will resume a parking ban overnight Thursday, from 1 a.m. to 6 a.m. 

More snow means hard work for some and play for others. (Paul Palmeter/CBC)