Halifax residents were being told to avoid driving on Saturday as flash flooding caused by heavy rains resulted in a significant amount of road damage throughout the municipality and across the province.
In an 8 a.m. release from the Halifax Regional Municipality, it was noted that numerous areas were washed out as cars were abandoned on roads and highways – resulting in dangerous driving conditions.
“There is a significant amount of damage and residents are advised to stay off the roads,” a release said.
By Friday at 10 p.m., the Halifax Regional Municipality issued an emergency alert, asking drivers to stay off all roads and highways unless it was an emergency.
A torrential downpour, accompanied by persistent thunder and lightning, started around 3:30 p.m. Friday. By 8 p.m., the rain was still coming down in buckets, causing chaos for drivers and homeowners, and continued throughout the night.
Environment Canada has issued rainfall warnings for much of the province and notes some areas have already received more than 150 millimetres of rain. It’s predicting an additional 40 to 100 millimetres could fall today.
In fact, reports had more than 200 millimetres of rain falling alone for parts of Bedford on Friday evening.
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Nova Scotia’s emergency system sent out an evacuation order early Saturday morning for residents of the St. Croix area in Hants County due to a dam overflowing.
The city said all emergency flooding calls were currently being directed to Halifax Water at 902.420.9287.
“Call volumes remain high, and residents are asked for their patience,” the release continued.
Halifax’s transit system was also experiencing delays and detours due to extensive road damage.
Two evacuation centres have since opened in the Halifax area for residents experiencing power outages or flooding in their homes.
The Beaver Bank Community Centre on 1583 Beaver Bank Road and the East Dartmouth Community Centre on 50 Caledonia Road in Dartmouth will remain open until further notice, the municipality said.
Environment Canada is forecasting an additional 2o to 30 milimetres of precipitation with a risk of thundershowers on Saturday. The rain is expected to end in the evening.
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