A winter storm bringing high winds, rain and snow pounded Canada's Maritime provinces Monday, leaving thousands without power and slowing travel.

The combination of wind, snowfall and storm surge warnings were in effect for several coastal areas in New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Winds gusting to more than 100 kilometres per hour caused the closure of the Confederation Bridge between New Brunswick and P.E.I. on Monday morning.

Ferry cancellations, road closures and power outages added to the headache for Maritimers.

But Environment Canada says relief is in sight. The system's high winds are expected to ease up as the inclement weather moves out starting Monday afternoon.

By early afternoon Monday, repair crews were beginning to restore power to more than 30,000 who were without electricity in Nova Scotia, and 10,000 in New Brunswick.

However until roads are cleared and conditions have fully improved, residents were being warned to keep an eye on the conditions and drive with caution in areas where roads are partially flooded or blocked by downed power poles and lines or other debris.

In the Halifax area, one street was blocked due to downed scaffolding, while traffic lights were out due to a widespread power outage, Halifax Regional Police reported.

Meanwhile, air passengers are grounded as flights were delayed at Halifax Stanfield International Airport. A service in Halifax to commemorate the deadly Halifax Explosion of 1917 was called off.

Strong winds were producing higher-than-normal water levels and pounding waves along parts of the Atlantic coast. Local coastal flooding and shoreline damage was possible before the storm surge eases Monday afternoon, Environment Canada says.

Coastal areas in southwestern Newfoundland were whipped by wind gusts of 110 km/h.

Ferry service between Caribou, N.S., and Wood Islands, P.E.I., was cancelled for the day and ferry service scheduled between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland was disrupted.

Many schools in the Fredericton area were also closed for the day with up to 25 cm of snow expected.

The wicked weather is a result of a low pressure system moving over the Maritimes. The system is expected to move into southern Quebec on Monday night, Environment Canada says.

With a report from CTV Atlantic Bureau Chief Todd Battis and files from The Canadian Press