PORTLAND, Maine — The Nationwide Hurricane Middle downgraded Hurricane Lee to a post-tropical cyclone however thousands and thousands of individuals remained underneath storm watches and warnings early Saturday because the storm nonetheless might produce hurricane-force winds, torrential rain and coastal flooding.
Extreme circumstances have been predicted as a chance throughout parts of Massachusetts and Maine and hurricane circumstances might hit the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, the place the storm had been predicted to make landfall later Saturday.
The storm was positioned about 230 miles southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and about 220 miles southeast of Eastport, Maine on Saturday morning.
The hurricane heart predicted hurricane-force winds extending greater than 100 miles from Lee’s heart with lesser however nonetheless harmful tropical storm-force gusts as much as 345 miles outward.
States of emergency have been declared for Massachusetts and Maine, the nation’s most closely forested state, the place the bottom was saturated and timber have been weakened by heavy summer time rains.
Cruise ships discovered refuge at berths in Portland, whereas lobstermen in Bar Harbor, Maine, and elsewhere pulled their pricey traps from the water and hauled their boats inland, leaving some harbors wanting like ghost cities on Friday.
Lee already lashed the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Bahamas and Bermuda earlier than turning northward and heavy swells have been prone to trigger “life-threatening surf and rip present circumstances” within the U.S. and Canada, in keeping with the hurricane heart.
Elements of coastal Maine might see waves as much as 15 toes excessive crashing down, inflicting erosion and injury, and the sturdy gusts will trigger energy outages, mentioned Louise Fode, a Nationwide Climate Service meteorologist in Maine. As a lot as 5 inches of rain was forecast for japanese Maine, the place a flash flood watch was in impact.
However at the same time as they hunkered down and ready, New Englanders appeared unconcerned by the potential for violent climate.
In Maine, the place persons are accustomed to damaging winter nor’easters, some brushed apart the approaching Lee as one thing akin to these storms solely with out the snow.
“There’s going to be large white rollers coming in on prime of 50- to 60-mph winds. It’ll be fairly entertaining,” Bar Harbor lobsterman Bruce Younger mentioned Friday. Nonetheless, he had his boat moved to the native airport, saying it’s higher to be secure than sorry.
On Lengthy Island, industrial lobsterman Steve Prepare completed hauling 200 traps out of the water on Friday. Prepare, who can be a firefighter, was going to attend out the storm on the island in Casco Bay.
He was not involved about staying there within the storm. “Not one bit,” he mentioned.
In Canada, Ian Hubbard, a meteorologist for Atmosphere and Local weather Change Canada and the Canadian Hurricane Centre, mentioned Lee received’t be anyplace close to the severity of the remnants of Hurricane Fiona, which washed homes into the ocean, knocked out energy to most of two provinces and swept a girl into the ocean a 12 months in the past.
But it surely was nonetheless a harmful storm. Kyle Leavitt, director of the New Brunswick Emergency Administration Group, urged residents to remain dwelling, saying, “Nothing good can come from trying out the large waves and the way sturdy the wind actually is.”
Harmful hurricanes are comparatively uncommon this far to the north. The Nice New England Hurricane of 1938 introduced gusts as excessive as 186 mph and sustained winds of 121 mph at Massachusetts’ Blue Hill Observatory. However there have been no storms that highly effective lately.
The area discovered the arduous manner with Hurricane Irene in 2011 that injury isn’t at all times confined to the coast. Downgraded to a tropical storm, Irene nonetheless brought about greater than $800 million in injury in Vermont.