Blizzard conditions cause havoc across Nunavut

Power outages, office closures and cancellations blamed on poor weather, especially in Kivalliq region

Red spots on an Environment and Climate Change Canada map show Nunavut communities that were under blizzard and snowfall warnings on Wednesday afternoon. (Image courtesy of Environment and Climate Change Canada).

By Nunatsiaq News

Blizzard conditions shut down hamlet offices across Nunavut — especially in the Kivalliq region — on Wednesday.

In a flurry of emails this morning, the Government of Nunavut said hamlet offices in Arviat, Chesterfield Inlet and Baker Lake were closed. They were also closed in Pangnirtung, and by noon offices in Kimmirut were also closed.

Earlier in the day, court proceedings in Igloolik had to be postponed due to the weather.

Overnight, reports on social media indicated parts of Arviat were without power for up to six hours. At around 6 p.m. Tuesday, Quilliq Energy reported there had been a complete power outage in Arviat, though partial power was restored within the hour.

Throughout Tuesday evening into Wednesday afternoon, the power company reported a stream of outages and updates, as work crews fought blizzard conditions and tried to restore power to residents in Arviat, Whale Cove and Rankin Inlet.

According to Qulliq Energy, power had been restored to Whale Cove by Wednesday afternoon, except for the airport. A small number of customers were without power in Rankin Inlet and an unspecified number were without power in Arviat by mid-afternoon.

In its social media messages, QEC reported poor weather conditions were impacting work crews and, in some cases, work was paused in order to wait for the weather to improve.

Environment and Climate Change Canada issued blizzard warnings for Arviat, Baker Lake, Chesterfield Inlet, Gjoa Haven, Kugaaruk, Naujaat, Rankin Inlet and Whale Cove. The national weather agency also issued snowfall warnings for Igloolik and Sanirajak.

The GN advised people to check its social media pages or listen to radio stations for updates.


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(8) Comments:

  1. Posted by E=MC2 on

    “The GN advised people to check its social media pages or listen to radio stations for updates.”

    Both great ideas when there’s no power.

    • Posted by anon on

      You can’t put some batteries in a clock radio?

    • Posted by Muffin on

      You want them to go door-to-door? I’m assuming you live in the North. If you don’t have a cell phone with data or you haven’t managed the phone’s charge, you at should have learned by now to have an emergency radio. Storms and weather are nothing new here. The government can’t wipe your butt for you.

    • Posted by Ginger ale on

      Welcome to Nunavut, where everyone expects it to be a beautiful tropical paradise but when the harsh realities of the Arctic sets in, no one can handle it. If you aren’t prepared for emergencies in the Arctic, that’s on you, not the government

  2. Posted by Bert Rose on

    And this is a story because?
    It is late November.
    Storms happen.

  3. Posted by I live in the Arctic on

    Oh man what a tragedy! Chilling out at home while the office is closed, yay for blizzards!

    • Posted by This Comment Aged Poorly on

      Big oofs on this comment in light of the recent article about the passing of an individual in Arviat.

      • Posted by John WP Murphy on

        This is the arctic and this blizzard was forecast.
        NO ONE should have been out on the land
        Condolences to the family of this young man.

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