Hurricane Gonzalo: Storm Batters Bermuda With Heavy Wind, Big Waves


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The eye of Hurricane Gonzalo moved over this British territory Friday night, pounding Bermuda with fierce wind and heavy surf as a powerful Category 2 storm that could raise coastal seas as much as three metres.
The storm’s top sustained winds clocked at 175 km/h, the U.S. National…

The eye of Hurricane Gonzalo moved over this British territory Friday night, pounding Bermuda with fierce wind and heavy surf as a powerful Category 2 storm that could raise coastal seas as much as three metres.

The storm’s top sustained winds clocked at 175 km/h, the U.S. National Hurricane Centre said. Gonzalo was moving north-northeast at 26 km/h and was expected to batter Bermuda for hours during the night.

A white haze covered the island as wind uprooted trees and waves slammed into the shore. Strong winds damaged part of the roof at Bermuda’s main hospital and caused water damage in the new intensive care unit, police spokesman Dwayne Caines said.

Hurricane-force winds were predicted to resume and batter Bermuda for seven hours, and forecasters said a storm surge could cause significant flooding on an island about one-third the size of Washington, D.C.

“They’re going to get hammered is the bottom line here,” said Max Mayfield, a former director of the U.S. hurricane centre in Miami.

The Bermuda Weather Service had warned residents not to go outside when the calm eye moved in, but some ventured out anyway to do quick damage assessments, noting that porches were destroyed and power lines were downed.

The centre said the storm’s wind speed was likely to slow further as Gonzalo moved away from Bermuda on a track that would take it past Newfoundland and across the Atlantic to Britain and Ireland. A tropical storm watch was issued for parts of southeastern Newfoundland.

Fabian was last major hurricane

The last major hurricane to strike Bermuda was Fabian in September 2003, a Category 3 storm that killed three police officers and another person while causing more than $100 million US in damage as it tore off roofs, pulverized trees and flooded famed golf courses. It also damaged the causeway linking the airport to most of Bermuda and left tens of thousands of homes and businesses without power.

Forecasters said Gonzalo was on the same path as Fabian and expected to cause similar damage.

The last major hurricane to cross land in the Atlantic Basin was Hurricane Sandy in 2012, which hit Cuba as a Category 3 storm.

Bermuda has a population of roughly 70,000 and lies 1,400 kilometres east of the U.S. state of South Carolina. It has one of the highest per-capita incomes in the world and the government enforces strict building codes to ensure homes can withstand sustained winds of at least 117 km/h.

Bermuda closed its schools, the international airport and the causeway, and soldiers from the Bermuda Regiment were dispatched to areas including nursing homes.

Gonzalo arrives just days after Tropical Storm Fay

Police Commissioner Michael DeSilva expressed alarm earlier in the day over the number of people still on the road as the storm approached. The Royal Gazette newspaper said one man had to be rescued from his boat and authorities briefly reopened the causeway to take a man to the hospital.

The newspaper reported Friday night that firefighters had received more than 20 calls for fires, roof damage and other incidents in the early going of the storm. At least 29,000 people were without power. The Bermuda Electric Light Co. said that 80 per cent of the island lost power due to the storm.

A 133-metre frigate of Britain’s Royal Navy with a crew of some 180 sailors was expected to arrive Sunday to help with post-storm recovery efforts.

The hurricane was arriving just days after Tropical Storm Fay damaged homes and knocked down trees and power lines in Bermuda, and people stripped stores of emergency supplies as they battened down for Gonzalo.

Gonzalo swept by the eastern Caribbean earlier this week, claiming one life in the Dutch territory of St. Maarten. Large ocean swells continued to affect parts of the Virgin Islands, the northern coasts of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, parts of the Bahamas and the U.S. southeast coast.

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About Earth Changes Media w/ Mitch Battros

Mitch Battros is a scientific journalist who is highly respected in both the scientific and spiritual communities due to his unique ability to bridge the gap between modern science and ancient text. Founded in 1995 – Earth Changes TV was born with Battros as its creator and chief editor for his syndicated television show. In 2003, he switched to a weekly radio show as Earth Changes Media. ECM quickly found its way in becoming a top source for news and discoveries in the scientific fields of astrophysics, space weather, earth science, and ancient text. Seeing the need to venture beyond the Sun-Earth connection, in 2016 Battros advanced his studies which incorporates our galaxy Milky Way - and its seemingly rhythmic cycles directly connected to our Solar System, Sun, and Earth driven by the source of charged particles such as galactic cosmic rays, gamma rays, and solar rays. Now, "Science Of Cycles" is the vehicle which brings the latest cutting-edge discoveries confirming his published Equation.
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