Wind gusts over 151 km/h, as parts of Newfoundland whipped by rain, snow

Neither sheds nor shingles were safe on Thursday morning, as winter winds topped 140 km/h.

The high winds are tearing down sheds and patios, roof ripped off Port aux Basques business

By mid-morning the entire roof had blown off the Harbour View Restaurant in Port aux Basques. (Richard Dubsy Hardy/Facebook)

The winds blew by the Port aux Basques' marine traffic centre at 99 knots or 183 km/h overnight Wednesday according to John Spencer, the town's mayor.

And they may have been blowing even harder than that — 99 knots is the maximum speed the centre can clock, he said. 

"That's as high as they can register them," he said.

High winds ripped across the entire island on Thursday morning, but it was the south coast and western part of Newfoundland that took the brunt of the damage.

Intense winds peeled the entire roof from the Harbour View Restaurant in the town, while the telephone pole in front of the building snapped off as well.

"It's the new norm now with the winds," Spencer said, adding that Marine Atlantic has had to cancel 36 crossings in the town in November alone.

"It's been a rough month all the way around."

Workers at the diesel generating station in Ramea reported gusts up to 151.2 km/h maximum, with sustained winds of 133.4 km/h.

In Burgeo, Deputy Mayor Rick Blagdon drove around town to survey the damage mid-morning. The small oceanside town had the strongest gust recorded on the island overnight, at 141 km/h.

A patio lays in ruin after high winds tore it from a house in Burgeo. (Steven Hiscock)

"Things that's been there for years and years, it's just gone," Blagdon said.

Shingles, patios and oil tanks have all been ripped from houses, sheds overturned and trees uprooted from the ground.

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      Blagdon said the wind was dying down by 11 a.m., but there was still garbage blowing around the streets.

      Schools closed, power out

      A winter storm warning is in effect for the central and western parts of Newfoundland and Labrador, with power outages and school closures across the island.

      Many towns recorded gusts in excess of 100 km/h, causing problems for Newfoundland Power and N.L. Hydro in their efforts to restore power.

      Both utility companies reported unplanned outages in communities all across the island, with estimated restoration times extending into the afternoon.

      Many schools in central chose not to open due to the weather. For a full list of closures and cancellations, visit CBC Newfoundland and Labrador's StormCentre page.

      In central Newfoundland, between 25 and 40 centimetres of snow is expected to fall throughout the day and overnight, before clearing up on Friday.

      On the Avalon Peninsula, heavy rains overnight are expected to taper off and be replaced with sun and cloud with a chance of showers.

      Winds are expected to die down on the island's west coast later in the morning, with a chance of snow and rain.

      Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador


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