Nova Scotia·WEATHER

Thousands without power as freezing rain, wind sweep Nova Scotia Friday

Freezing rain and strong winds left more than 42,000 Nova Scotia Power customers without electricity on Friday.

Flights were delayed, cancelled in Halifax, Sydney on Friday morning, and some remain cancelled for evening

Most of the outages were in the Halifax region. (Nova Scotia Power/Twitter)

Freezing rain and strong winds left thousands of Nova Scotia Power customers without electricity on Friday.

As of 11 p.m., more than 42,000 customers provincewide were without power.

CBC Meteorologist Ryan Snoddon said there had been more than 20 hours of freezing rain across Nova Scotia, but that temperatures were rising.

"The trees are just so loaded right now, we don't want those strongest winds hitting when everything is still super coated. So as much melting as we can do over the next  few hours would be a good thing," he said.

A spokesperson for Nova Scotia Power said crews are out working to restore power to those affected and are preparing for increasing winds as the storm continues Friday night.

"Winds are going to become southwest sustained at 50 to 60 but gusting 70 to 90 and even 90 to 100 along exposed area of the coast," Snoddon said, adding most people will experience winds in the 70-90 kilometre per hour range.

Snoddon said it's important to watch for falling ice.

"The ice is really going to be falling from the trees and the powerlines and houses as that wind really punches up," he said.

Early morning freezing rain made for icy road conditions that forced schools and universities to close across the province.

All public schools, both French and English, were closed.

Some universities, including Acadia and Saint Mary's, also closed.

Classes at most NSCC locations were cancelled. The Burridge Campus and Shelburne Campus delayed opening until 9 a.m.

Nova Scotia RCMP and the Halifax Regional Police advised drivers to proceed with caution.

"We're just certainly asking folks to take some extra time and drive to those conditions because you never know what it's going to be like when you turn the corner," said Const. John MacLeod of Halifax police.

The freezing rain left many cars encased in ice this morning. (Dave Irish/CBC)

Numerous flights at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport were delayed or cancelled this morning, as were flights at the JA Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport. Some flights remain cancelled at both airports for Friday evening.

Environment Canada has posted wind and freezing rain warnings for the entire province. There are rainfall warnings from the southwest to Halifax County east of Porters Lake.

The national weather agency says freezing rain will change to rain as the temperatures rise this evening.

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