Busy Atlantic hurricane season expected

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The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting hurricane activity in the North Atlantic Ocean in 2017 is likely to be above normal (45 percent) or near-normal (35 percent).

The Canadian Hurricane Centre says it responds to 4 or 5 tropical cyclone events each year on average, with 1 or 2 of those affecting Canadian land and another 2 or 3 threatening offshore waters.

Hurricanes are typically a greater concern in Canadian waters later in the season but the Canadian Hurricane Centre monitors the Atlantic Ocean year‑round for any tropical or tropical‑like cyclone that could pose a threat to Canada or its waters.

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Hurricane Otto strikes Central America

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Heavy rain and flooding swept away bridges in Costa Rica, 25 Nov 2016 (Reuters)

Otto has become the strongest storm so late in the Atlantic hurricane season to make landfall.

Otto struck the coast of Nicaragua and Costa Rica as a category 2 hurricane but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm as it weakens in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Forecasters say exceptionally high sea surface temperatures of around 29 C added extra fuel to the storm which delivered a month’s worth of rain in a few hours.

Officials say the death toll was nine but could have been higher if the storm had hit major population centres.

Matthew causes mayhem in Caribbean

mattOne of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent history, Matthew is swirling in the Caribbean with Haiti in its direct path.

The category 4 storm with sustained winds of 220 km/h and heavy rains causing flooding have forced thousands in Haiti and Jamaica to emergency shelters.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Matthew may lose some steam as it moves across Haiti, eastern Cuba and the Bahamas.

Forecasters currently believe Matthew will remain close to Florida and offshore to the east but caution its path could change.

Weather Network unveils fall forecast

fall2016If you liked this summer in Southeast New Brunswick, chances are you will like this autumn too as the Weather Network unveils its fall 2016 forecast.

Warm, sunny days are expected to continue for at least the first half of fall.

After a dry summer, rainfall will be near normal with the first snow possible by late November.

Forecasters will be keeping a close eye on the Atlantic hurricane season and how it may affect the Maritimes especially since it is already off to a busy start.

Earl to impact Central America

Earl
Hurricane Earl – the fifth named storm of the 2016 Atlantic hurricane season – with sustained winds of 120 km/h is racing toward Honduras, Belize, Guatemala and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

Forecasters say parts of Belize could be hit with heavy rain which could top 300 mm with possible flooding and mudslides over mountainous areas.

Earl is expected to weaken over land and possibly strengthen when it reaches the Bay of Campeche with another landfall near Veracruz, Mexico expected.

Colin brushes Atlantic Canada

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Post-Tropical Storm Colin, 08 June 2015 (CTV/Twitter)


By the time Colin had arrived in Canadian waters earlier today, it had become a post-tropical storm – essentially a strong low pressure system.

Much of Florida had received heavy rain from Colin before the storm moved into the Atlantic Ocean and tracked northeastward.

Wind was not a factor for the Maritimes but heavy rain fell in eastern Nova Scotia, Cape Breton Island and Newfoundland.

Greater Moncton received less than 20 mm of rain between remnants of Colin and another low pressure system which was crossing New Brunswick.

Colin was the third named storm of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season – after Bonnie in late May and Alex in mid-January.

Melissa mellows in north Atlantic

Courtesy Canadian Hurricane Centre

Courtesy Canadian Hurricane Centre

Tropical Storm Melissa is expected to become post-tropical later today according to hurricane forecasters.

Melissa had top winds today of 85 km/h and was headed in an east-northeast direction.

There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect, but gale-force winds are expected over portions of the western and central Azores islands tonight.

Gradual weakening is forecast during the next 48 hours and Melissa is expected to lose tropical characteristics tonight and become a post-tropical cyclone.

2013 Hurricane season was a dud

cp-hurricane-seasonThe 2013 Atlantic hurricane season is drawing to a close and it turned out to be a big bust.

With only a few weeks left, it’s now clear that American forecasters  – who called for a busy season – were way off the mark.

In the spring, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted unusually warm ocean temperatures would spawn between seven and 11 hurricanes and three to six could become major hurricanes with winds exceeding 178 kilometres an hour.

This year, there have been 12 named storms but the number of hurricanes and major hurricanes is well below average.

A dozen named storms is average for a season, which spans from June 1 to November 30.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre in Halifax says forecasters have issued bulletins for only two storms this year, Andrea in June and Gabrielle in September and both had little impact on the Atlantic region.

Accuweather unveils fall forecast

Courtesy Accuweather.com

Courtesy Accuweather.com

Although there is still plenty of summer left, Accuweather is already looking ahead to fall.

Much of Atlantic Canada can expect unseasonably warm and dry weather as a persistent area of high pressure prevails across the region.

Sea surface temperatures of the northwest Atlantic Ocean are expected remain well above normal which will also be a factor in the warming trend.

However, at least one tropical cyclone could still directly impact the Atlantic coast from September into early October as the hurricane season becomes more active.

Canada’s Top 10 Weather Stories for 2012

Flooding on Robie Street, Truro, NS, 10 September 2012 (Courtesy Facebook)

Flooding on Robie Street, Truro, NS, 10 September 2012 (Courtesy Facebook)

In its annual list, Environment Canada has chosen the top weather stories of the year – from super storms to super heat, and from immense flooding to immense fires.

1. BIG HEAT
Temperatures were above normal across Canada during winter, spring and summer from coast to coast to coast.

2. ACTIVE HURRICANE SEASON
By the end of the Atlantic hurricane season, 19 named storms were recorded with Chris, Leslie, Rafael and Sandy impacting Canada.

3. BRITISH COLUMBIA FLOODING
High levels of early spring flooding in British Columbia caused washouts, and slides, evacuations and fatalities.

4. MARCH MILDNESS
The March heat wave was off the scale in every way: intense, huge and long-lasting. In Moncton, a new record monthly high of 26 C was recorded.

5. WILD PRAIRIE SUMMER
Summer on the Prairies started out with short-lived cool temperatures and ended as one of the top ten warmest on record.

6. BIG MELT
The year will go down as one of extraordinary change across the Arctic Ocean, with sea ice becoming dramatically thinner, weaker and younger and melting more easily.

7. HIGH AND DRY IN THE EAST
Higher than normal temperatures and a lack of rainfall in Eastern Canada meant a great summer for most outdoor enthusiasts but trouble for some crops and water systems.

8. URBAN FLOODING
Thunder Bay experienced record breaking flooding in May while Montreal and Toronto also found themselves with expensive floods weeks later.

9. CALGARY HAILSTORM
A monstrous hailstorm pelted Calgary with hailstones larger than golf balls on August 12th and in a matter of 10 minutes, pounding hail dimpled vehicles and riddled house siding with millions of dents.

10. SAINT JOHN RIVER ICE-JAM FLOODING
The first days of spring were marked by a mandatory evacuation for residents of Perth-Andover and Tobique First Nation when the Saint John River and several tributaries spilled onto nearby fields and roads.