An intense storm is expected to bring another blast of winter to the Maritimes this week.

Environment Canada says a low pressure system is forecast to develop east of Cape Hatteras and intensify as it tracks northeastward toward the Maritimes on Tuesday.

Winter storm warnings and watches have been issued for most of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

Up to 10 centimetres of snow is expected by Tuesday evening before changing to rain in some areas.

As well, the national weather forecaster is warning that winds could gust up to 90 km/h, and blowing and drifting snow could cause power outages.

The storm is expected to start at 9:30 a.m. in southwestern Nova Scotia. The snow is expected to move into Liverpool, Lunenburg and surrounding areas by noon, with the snow arriving in Halifax by mid-afternoon.

Most of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia should be receive the brunt of the storm by dinner time. Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island should see its first snowflakes by 9 p.m.

A special weather statement has been issued for the Atlantic coastline of Nova Scotia, with the potential for storm surge and damaging waves Tuesday night into Wednesday.

Nova Scotia Power says it is activating its emergency operations centre in anticipation of the storm, and line crews will be on standby.

The major cities have snow removal crews ready to go.

With files from The Canadian Press.