WORLD NEWS

‘Biblical proportions’: heavy rainfall floods Nova Scotia, forcing evacuations

Jul 23, 2023, 6:41 PM | Updated: 6:43 pm

A man wearing chest waders walks past cars abandoned in floodwaters in a mall parking lot in Halifa...

A man wearing chest waders walks past cars abandoned in floodwaters in a mall parking lot in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on July 22. Mandatory Credit: Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press/AP

(CNN) — Three months’ worth of rain over the course of one day has flooded the Canadian province of Nova Scotia since Friday night, inundating streets, forcing evacuations and leaving at least four people missing – including two children.

A provincewide state of emergency has been declared, including for the Halifax regional municipality as well as nearby East Hants, West Hants, Lunenburg and Queens.

“We have had biblical proportions of rain over the night and into the day,” Halifax Mayor Mike Savage said Saturday.

On Sunday, Canadian police said they were continuing to search for two children, a youth and a man who had gone missing after the vehicles they were traveling in were submerged in two separate incidents early Saturday.

“Last evening, the RCMP Underwater Recovery Team conducted an underwater search of a flooded field and located an unoccupied pick-up truck believed to have been the vehicle that the children were traveling in,” the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said in a statement. “Search efforts continue in the same area for the four people and the second vehicle.”

Premier Tim Houston said on Twitter Sunday: “Thank you to Nova Scotia’s first responders for their incredible work in response to the floods.”

Houston told a news conference Saturday that three people traveling with the missing children had managed to escape their vehicle and two people had been rescued from the other car.

“I cannot stop thinking about these families and these four individuals,” Houston told reporters. “I want them to know that everything that can be done is being done. I know the entire province joins me in praying for their safe return.”

An estimated 250 millimeters of rain battered the province in one day, Houston said.

“We got three months’ worth of rain in less than 24 hours,” he said. “It came fast and it came furious.”

On Sunday, Houston told reporters authorities were working to repair closed roads and compromised infrastructure systems.

“We have approximately 25 bridges impacted across the province, 19 have been damaged, investigations continue on that but six – six – of those bridges were just completely destroyed,” he said during a news conference Sunday. “It’s incredible to see the force of the water and the impact it’s had. We’re working as quickly as possible to get our roads open.”

A temporary bridge is also expected to be completed Sunday night so the nearly 400 people isolated at a motocross track in East Hans can return to their destinations, according to Nova Scotia’s Department of Public Works.

As hundreds make their returns home following evacuations, others are still displaced and are receiving assistance from the Red Cross, Nova Scotia officials said.

About 750 people were ordered to flee the Halifax area overnight Friday, while more than 400 homes were evacuated in Lunenburg, authorities said Saturday.

Water levels remain high in many impacted areas of the province, so residents are urged to shelter in place and only return home if they are advised that it is safe to do so.

The state of emergency declaration remains in effect until August 5 unless officials terminate or extend it, according to the Nova Scotia government.

“Once again, our community is facing the awful force and unpredictability, nature and a changing climate,” Mayor Savage said on Saturday.

“This has been an extraordinary event and I know that it follows on the heels of wildfires of not very long ago and even Hurricane Fiona of last fall,” the Halifax mayor added.

Some communities in the Halifax area are still recovering from a large wildlife that started in late May, which led to evacuation orders for about 16,400 residents and destroyed 151 homes, CNN Canadian partner CBC reported.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered support to Nova Scotia residents in a post on Twitter Saturday afternoon, saying that with air and marine assistance “we’re providing resources to help with evacuations – and we stand ready to provide any additional federal resources needed. Please stay safe, everyone.”

Trudeau also spoke with Houston Saturday and emphasized federal and local collaboration on search and rescue efforts, Trudeau’s office said in a news release.

“The Prime Minister reiterated the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting Nova Scotians in the days and weeks ahead to respond to the flooding,” the release said. “He also acknowledged the strength of Nova Scotians, who are coming together in hard times and showing up for each other.”


The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

KSL 5 TV Live

World News

A small town in France dedicated a memorial to a crew of a B-17 Bomber killed during World War II. ...

Alex Cabrero

Memorial dedication in France for Utah man killed during WWII

On Saturday, a small town in France dedicated a memorial to a crew of a B-17 Bomber killed during World War II. The plane was shut down 80 years ago to the day near the town. One of the soldiers honored was Utah resident 2nd Lt. John "Jack" Lundberg.

2 hours ago

Palestinians search for casualties at the site of Israeli strikes on houses in Gaza City on June 22...

Eyad Kourdi and Ibrahim Dahman, CNN

More than 50 people killed or missing in Israeli strikes on central Gaza, local officials say

52 people have been killed or left missing in Israeli strikes near Gaza city on Saturday, according to the Hamas-controlled Government Media Office (GMO).

10 hours ago

Country officials said dozens of Hajj pilgrims have died as Mecca temperatures hit 120F, and seen h...

Lauren Kent, Caroline Faraj and Hande Atay Alam, CNN

Hundreds of Hajj pilgrims die as Mecca temperatures hit 120 Fahrenheit

More than 300 people have died and thousands have been treated for heatstroke while performing the annual Muslim Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca amid extreme temperatures.

2 days ago

In this handout photo, Just Stop Oil protesters sit after spraying an orange substance on Stoneheng...

Brian Melley

Climate protesters arrested over spraying orange paint on Stonehenge monument

Two climate protesters who sprayed orange paint on the ancient Stonehenge monument in southern England were arrested Wednesday.

2 days ago

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - JUNE 19: People watch a television broadcast reporting a meeting between North...

Kim Tong-Hyung

Russia and North Korea sign partnership deal that appears to be the strongest since the Cold War

Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have signed a new partnership that includes a vow of mutual aid if either country faces “aggression.”

3 days ago

Evan Gershkovich looks out from a defendants' box before a hearing at the Moscow City Court in Mosc...

Sergey Gudkov and Kathleen Magramo, CNN

Russia will hold Evan Gershkovich’s espionage trial behind closed doors, state media reports

American journalist Evan Gershkovich will stand trial behind closed doors in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg starting on June 26, state-run news agency TASS reported Monday, citing the court’s press service.

5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for hassle-free computer repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

‘Biblical proportions’: heavy rainfall floods Nova Scotia, forcing evacuations