‘Stay at home’: Nova Scotians told to prepare for big storm

Emergency shelter open to those without homes in Halifax

A rain and wind storm is expected to hit the province Monday night, prompting emergency officials to urge Nova Scotians to stay home.

“If people do not have to be out this evening, please do not. Stay at home through this storm,” said Roy Hollett, deputy chief of Halifax Regional Fire & Emergency, in a video update.

“Let the crews get out and get the job done, do the cleanup and make it safe for everyone to resume normal activities over the next three days.”

The forecast from Environment and Climate Change Canada shows a low pressure system crossing the province Monday, with the worst of the storm predicted to be overnight into Tuesday. Rain is expected to continue into the rest of the week.

People who are unhoused also need a place to stay during the storm.

The warming centre in St. Matthew’s church is open Monday from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. but is not intended for housing or overnight stays.

Emergency shelters will be providing overnight accommodations, HRM stated in an update. Comfort centres will be available for people to get food and water, charge electronics and receive updates during the storm.

Ground search and rescue will be visiting encampment locations in the city Monday night, said Erica Fleck, housing and homeless administrator.

“They will be driving through the HRM this evening tracking where occupants are and they will be offering them transport to the emergency shelter should people wish to move,” Fleck said in the video update.

The warming centre is accepting deliveries of warm meals over the next few days.

How to prepare

The municipality urges people to bring any outdoor furniture inside and clear storm drains of debris. Vehicles should be fuelled, electronic devices charged and flashlights equipped with batteries.

Earlier Monday, HRM said power outages are expected throughout the province, and essential items such as emergency kits, food, water and medications should be on hand.

Anyone who has waste collection scheduled for Tuesday should not put anything curbside until Tuesday morning to reduce blowing debris.

Halifax Water has asked residents to clear or report any storm drains that are blocked to reduce localized flooding.

Residents can call 311 for updates and are encouraged to sign up for hfxALERT, the municipal alert system to get updates by phone, email or text throughout the storm.

There will be additional updates on the @hfxgov Twitter account.

Avery Stewart

Avery Stewart is a journalist in Halifax. She has a background in English literature and philosophy.

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