Some damaged roads on the southwest coast of Newfoundland will reopen soon as work continues to repair the damage and support those in need after heavy rains swept through the area earlier this week.
Prime Minister Andrew Fureysays crews are adhering to the initial one-week deadline for cleaning and repairs to be completed.
He expects a leak east of the Channel-Port aux Basques to be repaired “within the next 24 to 48 hours”.
“This will restore medical appointments for them and then hopefully as the week progresses, the one closer to Port aux Basques will be restored,” Furey said Sunday. Rosemary Barton Live.
The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure issued a statement Sunday morning saying two of the four Trans-Canada Highway areas that were left during the storm will reopen on Monday, with reduced one-lane traffic in some areas.
The department expects areas near the Port aux Basques scale and Little Paradise Park to reopen in the middle of the week.
Furey said the flow of goods and supplies to Channel-Port aux Basques is continuing and military personnel are on the ground in Stephenville to help transport residents from isolated areas by helicopter.
CAF members have now set up an operations center at Stephenville Airport. Ctr will coordinate the hiring of 2 CH146 Griffon helicopters in support of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. pic.twitter.com/lKCJZ3PKgG
A spokesman for the Canadian Armed Forces told CBC News on Sunday that two CH-146 Griffon helicopters and 18 members of the helicopter detachment had arrived in Stephenville. Work is still underway to determine if ground forces will be needed, the spokesman said.
A Coast Guard helicopter also moved about 180 kilograms of medical supplies from Stephenvilleto Port aux Basques late Sunday morning. The helicopter also sent more than 540kg of fresh milk to St. Louis. Andrew’s in the Codroy Valley later in the day, the Coast Guard said.
Paul Weber, supervisor for the Canadian Coast Guard’s regional operations center for the Atlantic Canada, says the crews provided supplies and food as needed with the Bell 412 helicopter, the most capable helicopter in their fleet.
“We are able to perform many tasks and are able to reallocate resources across the Atlantic region as needed, and after receiving a request for assistance through Public Safety. [Canada], we will share whatever resource we can, “Weber said.
“We are just on stage right now to offer what help we can.”
Furey said Newfoundland West Coast residents are “knowledgeable and prepared for storms,” but said the damage in the area illustrates the need for strategies to mitigate coastal erosion.
“We will never be completely ahead of mother nature,” he said.
“This is not how it works. We need to work with our municipalities and federal partners to ensure that coastal communities in particular are well protected.”
‘A good idea’ to prepare for future storms
Bob Robichaud, a meteorologist on alert at the Canadian Hurricane Center, says powerful systems like the one that plunged Canada’s Atlantic with a record 300+ millimeters of rainfall are not as rare as they once were.
“It has not been long since the same kind of organization has caused some problems before,” he said, “so it seems to be happening more and with a warmer atmosphere.”
Robichaud said, despite being in the weather business for “many years now”, he had never seen amounts of rainfall like those observed this week in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.
He said while conditions this week “fit in perfectly” for a major weather event, residents should be prepared for similar events in the future.
“There is always the possibility that you may be isolated for a certain amount of time, so it would be a good idea to prepare,” Robichaud said.
More rain is already on the way to the southwest coast of Newfoundland, with Environment Canada issuing a separate weather statement on Sunday forecasting about 50mm of rain, starting Monday night.
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