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Days-long winter storm expected to hit eastern Newfoundland Wednesday

A woman makes her way through the snow-covered streets in St. John’s on Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. The City of St. John's has declared a state of emergency, ordering businesses closed and vehicles off the roads as blizzard conditions descend on the Newfoundland and Labrador capital. (Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press - image credit)
A woman makes her way through the snow-covered streets in St. John’s on Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. The City of St. John's has declared a state of emergency, ordering businesses closed and vehicles off the roads as blizzard conditions descend on the Newfoundland and Labrador capital. (Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press - image credit)
A woman makes her way through the snow-covered streets in St. John’s on Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. The City of St. John's has declared a state of emergency, ordering businesses closed and vehicles off the roads as blizzard conditions descend on the Newfoundland and Labrador capital.
A woman makes her way through the snow-covered streets in St. John’s on Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. The City of St. John's has declared a state of emergency, ordering businesses closed and vehicles off the roads as blizzard conditions descend on the Newfoundland and Labrador capital.

A messy storm spanning several days is expected across a large swath of Newfoundland this week. (Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press)

A winter storm watch is in effect for eastern Newfoundland, with a prolonged storm expected to hit the area on Wednesday, according to Environment Canada.

Snow is expected to begin late overnight Tuesday or early Wednesday morning and persist into Friday, said Mike Vandenberg, a meteorologist at Environment Canada's Gander weather office.

Around 30 to 50 centimetres of snow is expected to accumulate over several days, but "those amounts are probably fairly conservative," he said.

"It's gonna be a bit of a messy storm," said Vandenberg.

The winter storm warning is in effect for the Connaigre, Burin, and Avalon peninsulas, as well as the island's northeast coast in the Green Bay and White Bay areas. The Avalon Peninsula may also experience periods of rain on Wednesday, which would reduce snowfall amounts, he said.

Vandenberg says snowfall will be heaviest on Wednesday, with winds gusting up to 70 to 80 kilometres per hour.

People will likely need to shovel multiple times a day for two to three days, he says.

Vandenberg says the storm will likely taper off on Friday.

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