Lee made landfall in Nova Scotia on Saturday afternoon as a post-tropical cyclone after transitioning from a hurricane and slightly weakening earlier in the day. The storm produced winds near hurricane-force as it reached shore, forecasters from the National Hurricane Center said, and it was causing tropical storm conditions along the province and coastal Massachusetts just hours before its landfall in Canada.
Tropical storm warnings were still in effect for parts of Canada, including all of Nova Scotia, and a warning for a wide stretch of coastal southern New England was discontinued on Saturday morning.
The storm meant New England was likely to experience weather similar to what occurs during a nor’easter, said Andrew Loconto, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Boston. During such storms, which typically occur in late fall and through the winter, large waves crash ashore and often flood coastal roads.
The diminished storm has been producing strong tropical-storm-force winds that have extended far from its epicenter and have reached the coastline. And for areas inland, it is “going to be a pretty breezy day,” Mr. Loconto said.
Leaves are still on many trees, and abundant rain over the last several weeks could make some areas more susceptible to wind damage. Jon Breed, a spokesman for Central Maine Power, said that soil erosion caused by record rainfall means trees are less securely rooted in the ground, which could lead to power outages.
As of 5 p.m. Saturday, Lee was about 50 miles south-southeast of Eastport, Maine and moving north at 16 m.ph.
The strongest sustained winds up to 70 m.p.h. were over the Gulf of Maine and affected portions of far northeastern Maine and Nova Scotia. Such winds can cause roof damage to homes, topple trees and down power lines.
With the strongest threat of the storm expected in Nova Scotia, the hurricane watch was discontinued for Maine, but a tropical storm warning still remains in place. Gov. Janet T. Mills of Maine declared a state of emergency on Thursday, and the White House ordered federal assistance to the state.
When a hurricane becomes post-tropical.
As the storm headed north over cooler water, Lee transitioned from a hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone. Tropical systems like hurricanes get their energy from warm ocean temperatures and their cores expel that energy upward into the atmosphere. A typical storm system that moves across the United States will get energy from competing air masses of cooler and warmer air. When forecasters say that a storm has transitioned to post-tropical, it has morphed into a more typical storm system with warm and cold fronts.
This process typically weakens a storm and expands how far the damaging winds stretch. The scope of Lee’s wind field was already on the wider side for a hurricane, and it was expected to get a bit larger before landfall.
In Canada, officials are concerned that because of Lee’s broadness, it is likely to affect most of the Maritime Provinces and parts of eastern Quebec.
Western Nova Scotia faces some of the highest possible impacts from Lee, Environment Canada said.
By Saturday evening, the worst of Lee will have exited New England. By Sunday night, it will have pushed through most of eastern Canada.
Reporting was contributed by Sydney Cromwell, Johnny Diaz, Melina Delkic, Mike Ives, Orlando Mayorquin, Anastasia Marks, Eduardo Medina, Chris Stanford, John Yoon and Derrick Bryson Taylor.