Nor’easter nails U.S. Northeast

Scituate MA

Heavy waves crash into homes in Scituate, MA, USA, 02 March 2018 (Boston Globe)

A powerful storm surge forced water from the Atlantic to pour into the streets of Boston as huge waves crashed along the Massachusetts coast in a powerful Nor’easter roaring through the American Northeast.

For the second time this year alone, businesses tried to prevent flooding by using barriers and sandbags.

The storm packed strong winds with gusts of more than 110 km/h with driving rain in coastal areas to heavy snow in upstate New York.

Power has been knocked out for millions of customers and thousands of flights have been cancelled from Maine to North Carolina.

The Maritimes has managed to escape this system which will head out to sea but not before brushing southwestern Nova Scotia with gusty winds and heavy surf.


Heavy snow buries Moscow

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Plowing snow near St. Basil’s Cathedral, Red Square, Moscow, Russia, 05 Feb 2018 (Maximov/AFP)

The first weekend of February was marked by freezing rain and periods of heavy snow in the Russian capital city.

Moscow has been buried with more than 60 cm of snow which has shattered previous records, caused massive power outages and led to a rare ‘snow day’ for school students on Monday.

Drivers were urged to stay home as the so-called “snowfall of the century” downed over 2,000 trees and even the Russian army was deployed to help dig out.

The Russian weather agency was forecasting a low of -17 C by early Tuesday and another 8 cm of snow could fall in the next few days.

Deadly mudslides in California

SantaBarbara mudslides09_Jan_2018

Aftermath of mudslides in Santa Barbara, CA, USA, 09 Jan 2018 (US Coast Guard)

Only a month after California endured searing wildfires, the southern part of the state is now grappling with deadly mudslides thanks to heavy rain and barren ground from a recently scorched landscape.

Santa Barbara County has been the hardest hit area with hundreds of homes damaged and at least 65 destroyed.

The death toll stands at 17 with almost 30 injured and more than 40 reported missing.

Thousands lost electricity and a portion of a major highway (US 101) had to be temporarily closed due to the mud which covered it.

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.

Microburst in Montreal


Damage from microburst in Notre-Dame-de-Grace, Montreal, QC, 22 Aug 2017 (Instagram)

A sudden and powerful storm which meteorologists call a microburst created a path of damage in Montreal which included the Notre-Dame-de-Grace borough.

Strong, gusty linear winds up to 120 km/h brought down trees and power lines leaving thousands without electricity on Tuesday.

Environment Canada has confirmed a tornado struck Lachute, northwest of Montreal, where winds reached up to 180 km/h.

No one was hurt but hundreds of homes were damaged and some residents have been displaced.

Heavy rain, wind after record highs


Tree downed in key intersection of downtown Moncton, 09 June 2017 (Wade Perry/Twitter)

A low pressure system moved into the Maritimes today bringing up to 40 mm of rain to Greater Moncton.

A strong thunderstorm also rolled through Southeast New Brunswick in the early evening with wind speeds clocked as high as 102 km/h.

The brief but powerful gusts downed trees and branches onto power lines and caused thousands of power outages.

Environment Canada had not issued any weather warnings for the region.

The storm replaced a warm air mass which set record highs in at least four New Brunswick communities yesterday.

The hotspot was Kouchibouguac National Park which climbed to 32 C and that beats the maximum from 1992.

Moncton and Doaktown both tied their record highs of 30.6 C for the date.

January 2017 – Milder, less snowy but icy


Ice buildup tilts power pole in Salisbury, NB, 25 Jan 2017 (Facebook/Salisbury Happenings)

The defining weather event of January 2017 in New Brunswick was the devastating ice storm which brought down power lines and poles leaving more than 133,000 electricity customers in the dark for days.

Freezing rain and ice pellets began falling in Greater Moncton and Southeast New Brunswick on 25 January and the storm eventually moved northeast to Miramichi and the Acadian Peninsula.

Emergency shelters were set up in churches and community centres and the military was called in to help after some households were still without power a week later.

While overnight lows became frigid during the early and middle parts of the month, daytime highs were generally much milder than usual.

JANUARY 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  -1.2 C

Average LOW  -9.5 C

AVERAGE  -5.3 C (about 3.6 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  8.5 C (12 January)

Extreme LOW  -23.2 C (10 January)

RAINFALL  65.7 mm (about 100 percent ABOVE normal)

SNOWFALL  48.9 cm (about 60 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Acadian Peninsula pounded by ice storm 


Icy road on the Acadian Peninsula, 27 Jan 2017 (Twitter)

While Greater Moncton was hard hit by this week’s ice storm so was much of eastern New Brunswick including the Acadian Peninsula.

At least three communities have declared states of emergency – Tracadie-Sheila, Lameque and Shippagan – in what has been the most devastating ice storm in recent memory.

Two deaths have been reported and many others hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning related to an alternate source of indoor heating amid the massive power outages.

Power poles have snapped in half under the weight of ice-laden lines and downed trees and branches have shut down roads as the cleanup begins.

As of Saturday 28 January at 9am, NB Power reports about 46,000 customers are still without power and almost half are in the Acadian Peninsula.

NB ice storm cleanup continues


Power pole and lines dangling in NW Moncton, 25 Jan 2017 (Facebook)

Some residents of New Brunswick have been without power for more than 24 hours after the worst ice storm in recent memory.

NB Power has about 250 crews on the ground and more from neighbouring Nova Scotia trying to restore electricity in what officials are calling a “huge weather event”.

By the end of today, the power utility believes 80 percent of customers in Greater Moncton and Sussex will be back on the grid while 60 percent in Shediac, Sackville and Miramichi should be restored.

Warming centres have opened in several communities where residents can seek shelter and charge their electronic devices.

Fortunately temperatures are not very cold and should not fall below freezing until early Friday.

Damaging winds in latest storm


Part of a trampoline blew into power lines, Quispamsis, NB, 30 Dec 2013 (NB Power/Twitter)

Strong winds with gusts of more than 100 km/h in parts of New Brunswick knocked out power to more than 20,000 customers at the peak of the storm.

The so-called “weather bomb” resulted after two low pressure systems – one from the west and the other from the south – merged over the Maritimes.

Nova Scotia got pounding rain, wind and rough surf while New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had a combination of snow, rain and gusty winds.

Greater Moncton received about 5 cm snow and 10 mm of rain along with wind gusts up to 89 km/h bringing down tree many branches.