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Lightning illuminates the sky over the Maritimes

Lightning strikes in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Lightning strikes in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Lyndsay Morrison, staff writer

June 2, 2011 — Frequent lightning, large hail and gusty winds. Maritimers saw it all on Wednesday night, courtesy of thunderstorms.

The light show over Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
The light show over Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

A series of thunderstorms brought more than 200 lightning strikes to the Maritimes on Wednesday, triggering widespread power outages.

At one point, nearly 50,000 homes and businesses in Nova Scotia had no electricity. Hydro crews were busy working to get customers back online on Thursday.

Lightning also proved to cause problems for air travel early Thursday morning. Air Canada Flight 860 departed from Halifax and was bound for London, England. After 35 minutes into the flight, the aircraft's left engine experienced a “malfunction” which caused a loud noise.

The engine was shut down and the plane was diverted to Montreal because of the thunder and lightning in Halifax. While the pilot didn't confirm if lightning hit, passengers assumed that was the case because of the stormy conditions surrounding the plane. After safely landing in Montreal, technicians began to examine the engine.

The thunderstorms in Atlantic Canada were part of the same system that brought severe weather to the northeastern United States. Tornado watches and warnings were issued from Pennsylvania to Maine. At least one deadly tornado touched down in Massachusetts.

For a closer look at what you can expect in the Maritimes today, be sure to check your local forecast. The Weather Network has also released its' Summer Outlook 2011.

With files from Andrea Stockton

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