British Columbia

B.C. coast to be hit with a wet, windy weekend

Environment Canada says an atmospheric river known as a Pineapple Express will take aim at northern Vancouver Island and the Central Coast starting early Saturday morning.

Atmospheric river known as a Pineapple Express will bring heavy rain and strong winds

Rain falls in Vancouver on Friday. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

Coastal communities in B.C. are being warned to expect a very rainy and windy weekend.

Environment Canada has issued a special weather alert for multiple communities on the Central Coast and on Vancouver Island, as well as parts of Metro Vancouver.

The weather agency says an atmospheric river known as a Pineapple Express will take aim at northern Vancouver Island and the Central Coast starting early Saturday morning, with exposed coastal communities forecast to see wind gusts in excess of 90 km/h.

The weather phenomenon involves a build-up of tropical moisture extending from Hawaii to the West Coast, producing heavy downpours.

The agency says mild weather across the coast will result in rain at almost all elevations, producing high runoff and rising river levels.

The heaviest rainfall is expected along the west side of Vancouver Island and coastal communities on the Central Coast.

More than 100 millimetres of rain could pummel those regions, according to Environment Canada.

Mountainous regions, including the Sunshine Coast, Howe Sound and the North Shore mountains, could see more than 50 millimetres of rain within 24 hours.

The alert also applies to the northeast region of Metro Vancouver, including Coquitlam and Maple Ridge.

The weather system should lift around midday Sunday, according to the agency.

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