Nova Scotia

2nd storm in 2 days leaves thousands without power

Thousands of Nova Scotia Power customers spent Saturday without electricity after the second winter storm of the week brought heavy snowfall.

RCMP say they responded to dozens of collisions across the province in 24-hour period

Nova Scotia Power says some customers won't have their power restored until 11 p.m. Saturday. (Allison Devereaux/CBC)

The second winter storm of the week left tens of thousands of Nova Scotia Power customers in the dark Friday and Saturday.

Heavy snow battered the province Friday, knocking out power to homes and businesses in the Halifax area and central Nova Scotia, according to the utility's online outage map.

Tiffany Chase, a spokesperson for the utility, said the storm affected a total of 65,000 customers with 22,000 out at one point.

She said 120 technicians were spread out across the province and repaired damage caused by the heavy snow and stormy weather. 

At 6:45 p.m., about 1,700 homes and businesses were still without electricity. Nova Scotia estimated it would be restored by 11 p.m. at the latest.

Dozens of collisions

Nova Scotia RCMP responded to 47 collisions in the 24-hour period starting 10 a.m. Friday, the majority of them weather related. Const. Chad Morrison said there were no fatalities or serious injuries.

Both RCMP and the Department of Transportation tweeted Friday night that roads were very slippery and several vehicles went off the road.

In Kentville, an ambulance on its way to another accident careened off the road and into a steep embankment just north of Park Street.

The storm left this road impassable in East Gore, N.S. (Melissa Friedman/CBC)

Police got the call just before 8:30 p.m., said Const. Kevin Lutz, who added that there were two paramedics in the ambulance but they weren't badly injured.

It took several hours for crews to pull the ambulance out of the ditch, he said. 

"It was the heavy kind of the snowfall ... which I think causes the roads to be a little more slippery normally than if it's just a light kind of snow that accumulates," he said. 

Travel troubles

Several flights out of Halifax Stanfield International Airport were cancelled or delayed Saturday morning even though Environment Canada lifted its weather warnings. 

Caleigh Alleyne, who is from Toronto, spent five hours in a plane on the tarmac at the Halifax airport Friday evening before her flight was cancelled.

After no one offered hotel vouchers, the solo traveller spent the night in the terminal, which she called a "terrifying experience."

Caleigh Alleyne says she was one of many passengers who spent the night at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport. (Submitted by Caleigh Alleyne)

"I ended up going to a well-lit corner with a few other families there, which I thought was a little bit safer and made the best of the situation," Alleyne said mid-morning on Saturday. 

At that point, she was still "holding her breath" about getting on a flight back to Toronto after another three-hour delay.

This latest weather system came just one day after a messy mix of snow, rain and wind led to treacherous road conditions. Thursday's storm knocked out power to more than 30,000 Nova Scotia Power customers.

Another storm expected

CBC meteorologist Kalin Mitchell said western parts of the Halifax region saw higher amounts of snowfall with 18 centimetres reported in West Chezzetcook and about 8.4 centimetres in Dartmouth.

He said a bank of dry air brought just a few centimetre of snow to parts of Guysborough and Antigonish counties.

Another storm is expected to hit the province on Tuesday and Mitchell said he expects to have more information Monday.

With files from Emma Smith and Elizabeth McMillan