Major storm moves across Maritimes

 

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“Bomb cyclone” south of the Maritimes, 04 Jan 2017 (earth.nullscholl.net)

An powerful Nor’easter has arrived in the Maritimes with strong, gusty winds bringing heavy rain for Nova Scotia and a snow/ice pellets/rain for New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

Winds were hurricane-force in the Halifax region at 117 km/h and thundersnow – a thunderstorm with snow – was recorded in Sydney.

Storm surge warnings are in place along the Atlantic coast as water levels will be high enough to cause some coastal flooding.

In Greater Moncton, snow began falling around noon with freezing rain/ice pellets by late afternoon and rain by evening.

Environment Canada says the storm will move out of the region by Friday afternoon but more frigid air is filtering in behind the system which will mean a very cold weekend.

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Ophelia pounds Ireland & U.K.

Schools and businesses closed in Ireland when the remnants of Hurricane Ophelia brought destructive winds up to 160 km/h which downed trees and power lines creating widespread power outages.

Flights, ferries and even buses were cancelled and at least three deaths are attributed to the storm which officials say is the worst to hit Ireland in 50 years.

Strong winds also caused disruptions in Scotland and northern England where rail services were halted after fallen trees blocked lines.

Ophelia formed in the eastern Atlantic on 11 October and became a Category 3 hurricane three days later.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Ophelia was the furthest east ever recorded for an Atlantic hurricane.

Nate makes U.S. landfall twice

Nate

Canadian Hurricane Centre image, 12PM ADT, 08 Oct 2017 (EC)


After striking land in Louisiana and later in Mississippi early today, Hurricane Nate has weakened to a tropical storm as it heads inland over the Southeastern United States.

Sustained winds of 140 km/h had dropped to 70 km/h after landfall but storm surges caused flooding along the Gulf coast and more than 200 mm of rain could fall in some areas.

Nate originated in the southwestern Caribbean Sea and claimed more than 30 lives in Central America before moving northward.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre has issued a tropical cyclone statement for Southern Ontario with remnants of the storm expected to bring up to 40 mm of rain on Thanksgiving Day.

Maria becomes a menace

MariaThe parade of hurricanes in the Atlantic continues with Maria making landfall late tonight over the eastern Caribbean island nation of Dominica as a powerful category 5 storm packing sustained winds of 260 km/h.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center is outlying a path for Maria which is eerily similar to the recent Hurricane Irma with the U.S and British Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico expected to be impacted on Wednesday.

Maria will be accompanied by a dangerous storm surge and between 300-500 mm (12-20 inches) of rain to some of the islands causing life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.

Meantime, Hurricane Jose is still churning northward as a category 1 storm with heavy surf and rip currents along the U.S East Coast from North Carolina to Massachusetts.

Canadian forecasters say the remnants of Jose have already brought high humidity to the Maritimes and will give Nova Scotia persistent moisture and cloud cover as well as rough surf along the Atlantic coast.

Irma swamps Florida

The impact of Hurricane Irma in Miami, FL, USA, 10 Sept 2017 (AP)

Irma was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm today after slamming Florida with destructive wind, heavy rain, flash flooding, high storm surges and even tornadoes.

Irma, one of the most powerful hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean, made landfall over the Florida Keys on Sunday before coming ashore near Naples and then heading up the state’s west coast.

Miami was not in the storm’s direct path but was still battered by strong winds which swayed high rise buildings, brought down three construction cranes and downtown streets were swamped.

In northeast Florida, Jacksonville had historic flooding after the swollen St. Johns River spilled its banks and officials said dangerous conditions were expected for several days.

Prior to arriving in the United States, Irma claimed 10 lives in Cuba according to state media after battering Havana and tourist resorts such as Varadero and Cayo Coco where the international airport was destroyed.

Triple Threat: Irma, Jose & Katia

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From left to right, Hurricanes Katia, Irma, Jose, 08 Sept 2017 (Earth Wind Map)

St Martin hurricane

Irma aftermath on St. Maarten Island, eastern Caribbean, 06 Sept 2017 (Reuters)

Hurricane Irma has barreled through the Caribbean as a Category 5 storm claiming more than 20 lives and destroying more than 90 percent of the buildings on the islands of Barbuda, St. Martin/St. Maarten and St. Barts.

Irma is heading for Florida where officials say it could be the strongest storm ever and evacuation orders have led to massive lineups at gas stations as residents flee northward.

Following a similar path, Hurricane Jose is a Category 4 storm which could hit the already battered islands of Antigua and Barbuda.

Hurricane Katia is a Category 2 storm in the Gulf of Mexico which will make landfall along Mexico’s east coast bringing heavy rain and a storm surge before dissipating quickly over the rugged Sierra Madre mountains.

Forecasters say three simultaneous hurricanes is quite rare and the last time was in 2010 with Hurricanes Igor, Julia and Karl.

Hurricane Irma intensifies

Irma
Hurricane Irma is being called a “potentially catastrophic” category 5 storm by the U.S National Hurricane Center with maximum sustained winds of 295 km/h as it bears down on the eastern Caribbean.

The core of Irma is expected to move across the northern Leeward Islands overnight and will track close to the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico by late Wednesday and the Dominican Republic by Thursday.

A hurricane watch has also been issued for eastern Cuba along with northern Haiti, southeastern Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos.

Forecasters say Irma is increasingly likely to target Florida (now under a state of emergency) and parts of the American Southeast as a dangerous hurricane this weekend.

Harvey finally downgraded

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Floodwaters surround homes and vehicles in east Houston, Texas, USA, 28 Aug 2017 (Reuters)

Tropical Storm Harvey has been downgraded to a tropical depression but not before creating a new weather record in the United States.

Climatologists say Harvey is the worst rainfall event ever with 1318 mm (51.88 inches) of rain recorded at Cedar Bayou, Texas beating the previous mark of 1219 mm (48 inches) in Medina, Texas from Tropical Storm Amelia in 1978.

Thousands of residents could still be stranded and an estimated 40,000 homes have been destroyed by the storm in the Houston area.

Heavy rain is now moving over Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Tennessee with some areas expecting more than 200 mm.

Catastrophic flooding in Houston

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Floodwaters inundate a neighbourhood in Houston, TX, USA, 28 Aug 2017 (Getty Images)

More than 3,500 residents of Houston have been rescued since Tropical Storm Harvey began pounding southeastern Texas with more than 750 mm of rain and counting.

Tens of thousands displaced from their homes are being housed at evacuation centres which are now overcapacity forcing many to sleep in chairs or on the floor.

Officials began releasing water from two Houston reservoirs on Monday in order to prevent uncontrollable flooding in the downtown area.

Houston’s two main airports have been closed since their runways are completely underwater.

The Texas Gulf Coast is a key centre of the American oil and gas industry with some of the largest refineries in the United States halting operations.

Harvey hammers Houston

Flooding in Buffalo Bayou Park, Houston, TX, USA, 27 Aug 2017 (Twitter)


Harvey may have been downgraded to a tropical storm as it moved inland over Texas but the U.S. National Weather Service stated “this event is unprecedented and all impacts are unknown and beyond anything experienced.”

Forecasters say the Houston metropolitan area could receive more than 1000 mm of rain from the storm over the next few days which has claimed at least five lives. 

By early today, more than 600 mm had fallen in America’s fourth largest city overwhelming lakes and rivers forcing thousands of residents scrambling into boats or onto rooftops to safety.

Tornado warnings have been lifted but a flash flood warning remains in place for much of southeastern Texas.