Strong winds, heavy rain as storm batters Quebec, tracks towards Atlantic Canada

Up to 30 millimetres of rain could fall across the Maritimes, says Environment Canada

Nearly 200,000 Hydro-Quebec customers remained without electricity as of noon today after strong winds and heavy rain caused havoc with the province’s power grid.

The utility says the intense depression coming from New England has hit several areas of the province, as winds of 90 kilometres per hour cause branches and trees to knock down power lines.

Hydro-Quebec says some 300 linemen are working to fix problems in every part of the province – the hardest hit being the Monteregie south of Montreal, where more than 43,000 were without electricity.

Related: Spring flooding cost Ontario and Quebec $223 million

Power outages are also affecting more than 27,000 Hydro clients in two different areas -the Laurentians north of Montreal and the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean a few hundred kilometres north of Quebec City.

The same weather system is expected to reach parts of Atlantic Canada later today.

Environment Canada says the low pressure system over New England will continue to strengthen as it moves north.

The Maritime provinces can expect wind gusts reaching 90 kilometres per hour before the system moves into western Newfoundland where winds up to 150 kilometres per hour are expected later this evening.

The national weather forecaster says up to 30 millimetres of rain could fall across the Maritimes, and rough surf is also expected.

Thousands of people in the U.S. were without power early Monday as the storm blew through the northeast.

Southern New England appeared to suffer the brunt of the storm damage overnight.

Eversource reported more than 150,000 Connecticut customers were without power around 2 a.m. Monday. National Grid also reported more than 130,000 customers were without power in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

Related: Most Quebec residents unfazed by and uninsured for earthquake risk

The National Weather Service said there were reports of downed trees and power lines around the region and roads that were not passable due to flash flooding.

The same storm system also caused problems in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York.

It began making its way up the East Coast on Sunday, which was also the fifth anniversary of Superstorm Sandy.

That 2012 storm was blamed for at least 182 deaths in the United States and Caribbean and more than $71 billion in damage in the United States.

– With files from the Associated Press

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