The chance of tropical storm Leslie hitting Newfoundland on Tuesday is quite high, the Canadian Hurricane Centre (CHC) said Sunday.
"We have more confidence now in the direction Leslie will take but still uncertain on the arrival time," the agency said on its site. "The storm's effects will be far-reaching.
Wind speeds are expected to reach 100 km/h and "there is a fairly high likelihood of very heavy rainfall from the merged front/hurricane over Nova Scotia, PEI and Newfoundland," the CHC says.
The Centre says that "much-smaller hurricane Michael well to the east-northeast of Leslie is not expected to cause much of an issue" but admits that its experience with hurricanes in close proximity to tropical storms "is minimal so we will certainly monitor it."
People should be ready to be on their own for a couple of days if Leslie hits hard, said Dan Bedell, a spokesman for the Red Cross in Atlantic Canada
"In the initial hours after a severe storm, emergency officials need time to assess the damage and set priorities and determine who needs help the most and focus on that," he said. "That's why we caution everyone they need to be able to look after themselves for a few days."
When Hurricane Igor hit Newfoundland in 2010, many people were trapped in their homes, or even in their isolated communities, because of flash flooding and other obstructions on the roads.
In those cases, it's important to have either a hardwired land-line telephone, or a car-battery charger for your cellphone, so you don't lose all contact with the outside world, Bedell said.
-- with files from Sheena Goodyear