FREDERICTON (GNB) – The New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization advises New Brunswickers to prepare their properties for freezing rain and heavy rainfall tonight.

Rainfall warnings have been issued for tonight and Tuesday for central and southwestern areas of the province, where up to 40 mm of rain is expected. Freezing rain warnings have been issued for northern and southeastern portions of the province, including Miramichi and Woodstock.

Freezing rain and heavy rainfall bring the risk of power outages. Surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots can become icy, slippery and hazardous. Ice buildup may cause tree branches to break.

Take appropriate actions

Residents should take appropriate actions to protect their properties by clearing drains and securing items that may be prone to damage from wind and rain.

Homeowners who have experienced flooding during heavy rainstorms in the past should take all necessary precautions: elevate or remove possessions from basements or other low-lying structures and clear any snow, ice or debris from drains.

Residents can report any issues related to increased water levels or flooding at any time by calling 1-800-561-4034.

The best way to access emergency services is to call 911.

Advice to motorists

The rainfall will make driving conditions hazardous. Motorists should adjust to the driving conditions.

Drivers should obey road signs indicating the presence of water and changes in speed limits. When possible, avoid any roads covered by water, as it represents a serious safety risk. Water may be deeper than it appears, and may conceal sinkholes or other damage and debris. Under no circumstances should a motorist drive around barriers erected on roadways.

Other reminders:

  • Visibility can be severely reduced during downpours; reduce your speed.
  • Watch the roads for standing water, which could cause hydroplaning.
  • Be on the lookout for washed-out road shoulders and culverts.
  • If you see debris on the roads, or damaged culverts, report it to your local authorities or police.

72-hour preparedness

New Brunswickers are reminded to have everything they need to sustain themselves for at least 72 hours following a storm. This includes preparing an emergency kit for home and car, knowing what to do during power outages, and knowing how to stay safe during an emergency.

An emergency kit should include food, water, batteries, a battery-powered radio, first aid supplies and any special items such as prescriptions, infant formula and equipment for people with disabilities.

An emergency preparedness guide is available online. Information on preparing for a power outage is available on the NB Power website.

Social media

For further updates, follow the New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization on Twitter and Facebook, or by visiting the 24-7 emergency updates webpage. For storm-related social media messages, search #nbstorm.