Residents In Canadian City Of Cape Breton Await Rescue After Snowstorm

SYDNEY, Nova Scotia (AP) — Several residents in Canada’s Atlantic city of Cape Breton were anxiously awaiting rescue Tuesday after a huge dump of heavy, wet snow over the weekend jammed entrances to homes, blocked roadways and prompted a local state of emergency.

The Cape Breton Regional Municipality declared a state of local emergency on Sunday, which may remain in place for the rest of the week.

The cleanup could take days after up to 150 centimeters (59 inches) of snow accumulated in parts of the Cape Breton Regional Municipality including Sydney, the largest community on the island in the province of Nova Scotia.

Debbie Crane, 61, said she hasn’t left her home in Whitney Pier, a Sydney neighborhood, since Friday night, when blowing snow created drifts that blocked both entrances and buried her car.

As of Tuesday, Crane had already missed one kidney dialysis appointment. Crane said she has had to limit her intake of fluids to reduce the strain on her kidneys as she waits for a ride to the hospital.

The provincial government is asking people in Cape Breton to stay off the roads as more snow-clearing equipment is being brought into the area. Nova Scotia has also requested help from neighboring provinces and Ottawa.

Federal Emergency Preparedness Minister Harjit Sajjan said Parks Canada will send snow-removal equipment and that the Canadian Coast Guard is sending helicopters. Organizations such as the Red Cross will help with humanitarian work, he said.

John Lohr, Nova Scotia’s minister responsible for emergency management, said the province needs federal help to maintain public safety.

Schools across Cape Breton remained closed Tuesday, as were schools in parts of northern and eastern Nova Scotia, where government offices were expected to open later in the day.