Snow shutters N.B. schools, businesses as thousands remain without power
Environment Canada issued snowfall and flood warnings for much of the province, saying central and northern parts of New Brunswick could expect up to 25 cm of snow today.
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FREDERICTON — Savanah Gould looked up from her perch inside a dark New Brunswick Tim Hortons Thursday to find yet another snow-blasted coffee-seeker jiggling the locked doors.
"We're just basically sitting here waiting for the power to come back on," the 20-year-old cafe employee said Thursday afternoon during yet another power outage at the Tim Hortons on Smythe Street in Fredericton.
"We're ... watching a lot of customers pull in, walk up and shake the doors."
Parts of New Brunswick were largely shut down, as another round of messy weather prompted businesses and schools to close, with some areas hit by up to another 25 centimetres of snow.
Some public schools and post-secondary school campuses were closed, and Fredericton Transit pulled its buses off the road until 2 p.m.
NB Power said roughly 12,600 of its customers were still without power Thursday afternoon.
The latest system came as the power company worked to restore outages left over from another pre-winter storm that closed schools and cancelled flights in the Maritimes on Wednesday.
That storm also knocked out power at the Smythe Street Tim Hortons on Wednesday. They were turning customers away for nine hours as they waited for lights to come back on and coffee machines to resume brewing, said Gould.
The messy weather was wreaking havoc on roads throughout the province and disrupting travel in the Maritimes.
Northumberland ferries cancelled sailings between Saint John, N.B., and Digby, N.S., while crossings between Wood Islands, P.E.I., and Nova Scotia were cancelled due to high winds.
Five Quebec soldiers were involved in a three-vehicle accident on the Trans Canada Highway near Meductic and caused by slippery road conditions.
Base Gagetown public affairs officer Stephanie Duchesne said three military vehicles — a LAV 6 towing a trailer with petroleum and two trucks towing water trailers — ran into trouble on the highway Thursday morning, said Duchesne.
She said the soldiers, based in Valcartier, Que., had been taking part in an exercise at Base Gagetown and were on their way back to Quebec.
"Two soldiers were taken to hospital for precautionary measures — one for a sore neck, and that member has been released — and one required stitches to the forehead, and that member is still in the hospital," said Duchesne on Thursday afternoon.
Many New Brunswickers were making the best of the stormy weather.
A video making the rounds on Twitter Thursday showed a man sledding down a small hill in Moncton and face-planting after hitting a man-made jump, prompting buoyant laughter from a child. The laughter only intensifies when the man reluctantly rolls over and lifts his snow-covered face from the cold ground.
Meanwhile, Newfoundland was also bracing for a blast of messy weather, with up to 25 centimetres expected beginning Thursday evening and continuing into Saturday in southern parts of the province. A mix of snow and rain was expected in the east.
— By Aly Thomson in Halifax.