The UK Saint Jude’s Day Storm – just another fall storm in a long line of many

By Paul Homewood

Crush: A tree fell on a bus on Turnpike Lane in north London. Police closed the road

It has been variously described as “The Storm of the Century”, “Unprecedented”, “Superstorm” and “A repeat of 1987”. I refer, of course, to the St. Jude storm that passed through early this morning  and is now headed off into the North Sea.

Let’s have a look at the impact, and see how it compared to other recent storms in the UK. We have not yet got confirmed figures from the Met Office, but it is unlikely they will be much different to the provisional data below.

The Daily Mail have this useful map, which seems to sum up things nicely.

image

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2478056/Girl-17-killed-falling-tree-transport-chaos-power-cuts-ST-JUDES-STORM-grips-UK.html

The Telegraph report that the highest windspeed recorded on the mainland was 82mph at Langdon Bay in Kent. The next highest, 79mph, was in Essex.

Winds of this speed are not unusual in the UK, albeit less common in the south. It was only last year that Scotland experienced a similar storm, as the Met Office report.

The worst affected area was southern Scotland – particularly the Central Belt – where winds gusted at well over 70 knots (81 mph). In this area, this storm was judged as the most severe for 13 years – since 26 December 1998, with wind speeds exceeding those of the recent storm of 8 December 2011. Very strong winds were also experienced across much of England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, with winds here also widely gusting at 50 to 60 knots (58 to 69 mph).

In England, you have to go back to January 2005 for a comparable storm, this time in the North of England. Again, from the Met Office:

January 7/8 – as a very deep depression (reaching 962 mb) tracked north-eastwards across southern Scotland, strong winds battered England and Wales particularly northern areas. Gusts in excess of 70 knots (81 mph) were recorded from the Isle of Man and north Wales across to the coast of north-east England. 88 knots (101 m.p.h.) was recorded at St Bees Head (Cumbria) and 89 knots (102 m.p.h.) at Aberdaron on the Lleyn peninsula (Gwynedd).

In southern England, the St Jude storm was the strongest since October 2002, when highest gusts of 102mph were recorded at the Needles,( as against 99mph this year).  In 2002, the storm hit the west of England and Wales hardest, but, nevertheless, winds over 80mph hit inland areas, such as Cottesmore, in Rutland, which recorded 70 knots (80mph).

The map below suggests that more of the country was affected. (Remember that 60 knots is at least 70mph).

image

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climate/uk/interesting/27oct2002storm.html

Neither the storm of 2002 or this year’s come anywhere close to the Burn’s Day storm of 1990, or the Great Storm of 1987.

Burns’ Day Storm  – January 1990

From the Met archives:

Burns’ Day Storm – 25 January 1990

However, in many places wind speeds were comparable to or higher than October 1987. January 25th is the day when many Scots remember the birthday of their national poet Robert Burns.

Impacts

The strong winds affected a much larger area than in October 1987 and they struck during the day so consequently there were more deaths and injuries, with 47 lives lost. The wind speeds were comparable to those in 1987, but higher over parts of southern England and Wales. Once again there were disruptions to power supplies and to transport, particularly to road transport because of fallen trees and overturned vehicles. There was also considerable damage to buildings, particularly to housing and to the south of a line from west Wales to Suffolk. The loss of trees was less than in October 1987 since the strongest winds occurred in less wooded areas and deciduous trees were bare of leaves.

Weather Data

The synoptic chart for 12 GMT, 25 January 1990.

synop

The strongest winds were in the late morning and afternoon, with hourly mean speeds in excess of 40 kn (46 mph) across a large part of southern England and Wales and over 50 kn (58 m.p.h.) at exposed places along the coast. Gusts of over 80 kn (92 m.p.h.) were reported along coasts in west Wales and from Cornwall to Kent. The highest gusts recorded were 93 kn (107 m.p.h.) at Aberporth in west Wales and at Gwennap Head in Cornwall. The return period (average frequency of occurrence) of the maximum gusts was estimated at more than 100 years at places from Dorset to west London.

highestgust_kn

The Great Storm of 1987

image

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/t/5/October_87_Storm_-_16_October_1987.pdf

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90 thoughts on “The UK Saint Jude’s Day Storm – just another fall storm in a long line of many

  1. We did manage to get to 16mph in Solihull so affecting the whole country is a fantasy. Only reason we really heard about it was because it affected the S.E. 200 trees down is hardly a major event even there. Railways are highly vulnerable because of shallow rooted trees growing on embankments..

  2. I remember the 1987 storm really well. I know that the Alarmists are going to claim that they see the hand of climate change/climate confusion/weather wierding. Anyone with a modicum of sense will sniff that out as being bunkum so I really hope that they do. It makes them look silly. Weather is not Climate !

  3. I have not yet heard any bleats that “this storm is further proof of global warming”, and not just some unusually severe weather.

    Sadly, the critical word here is ‘yet’, by now the pseudo-scientists must be lining up around the block with their ‘proofs’ – the Guardian and the BBC will be first in line with their dubious ‘experts’ confirming that this storm was not weather, but 110% copper-bottomed, evidence confirming imminent Thermageddon.

  4. ‘Ferocious rain, thunder and winds attack S/W parts and head east, bringing heavy rain, hail, thunderfloods and tornados likely, firstly in S/W parts and then in east and north. Thick cloud. Very mild nights, days also mild (less so in SW). No change from 45d’

    The above is from Piers Corbyn’s October 30day ahead forecast, for the period 29th October to 31st, for which I am a subscriber and I received the forecast on 1st October.

    The storm arrived one day early, but that’s pretty good from 6 weeks out (you’ll note the last sentence – NO CHANGE FROM 45 DAY FORECAST), isn’t it??

  5. Paul

    In our neck of the woods-the South West-the storm was not as bad as had at first been feared. Analysing it now on the local news the BBC meteorologist said it was the worst storm in this region for nearly….roll of drums….two years.

    Nowhere near as bad as 1987, but bad enough of course for those who suffered the thankfully rare tragic consequences.

    tonyb.

  6. Let’s not downplay the seriousness of this weather event.
    Four people were killed.
    It would be right to pause and remember that.

  7. I live about 130 miles from London and we saw nothing of it here.
    It is big news because it affected the south east where most of the national media are based.

  8. Its right to remember the damage and the deaths, but also to compare it to a normal day’s worth of accidents.
    But the biggest storm was the storm of speculation before it. As a result we see the rail network closed down before the storm hit on the assumption that it was going to be far worse.

  9. Here in North Lincolnshire where l live we got off rather lightly.
    Because the centre of the storm passed almost overhead, so missing the strongest of the winds. When l awoke this morning and checked my barometer it was reading 28.80 inches (975) millibars. This has been the second lowest reading l have recorded since having the barometer since October 1994.

  10. As a former resident of Hounslow, I am always surprised by how little damage results from high winds as the the housing stock in much of London dates from the Victorian era when developers were not constrained by much in the way of a sensible (and enforcible) building code.
    For example, roof timbers were not wired on to walls, very few steel-reinforced concrete bondbeams were tied into the construction and very little in the way of diagonal bracing was employed. As an Antipodean observer with some practical knowledge and experience of building structures to withstand inclement weather events, it seems that a mostly benevolent climate with low inherent wind speeds without significant earthquake risk allowed English builders to work on the principle “It won’t fall down because there is nothing holding it up!”

  11. We must not forget any casualties, and it is fair to say, thankfully, that there was plenty warning of this storm.

    (The first warning appeared to come from Jonathan Powell of Vantage Weather, who flagged it up a couple of days before the Met Office)

  12. I was in both storms (yesterdays and 1987) and I was also in areas which had the highest wind. This time I was in both high wind and heavy rain.

    The 1987 storm was far worse.

  13. I understand 4 people lost their lives last night in accidents directly related to the storm (falling trees etc.), This is of course tragic for them and their families.

    Overall however the storm last night was over-hyped (shock!!!) and in comparison to 1987, which I remember fairly well, a damp squib.

    The BBC are still calling it “the worst storm to hit the UK in a quarter of a century” though perhaps they have to try to justify why half their normal presenters weren’t on air today (and BBC on-line ‘Have Your Say’ was conspicuous by its almost complete absence – one story started at 1pm).

    The small number of tragic events aside, it was a complete non-event.

  14. TonyB

    I’m in the South West too. I followed the gale on local weather stations and it seemed as if it was basically a force 8 with the odd gust to force 9 or maybe force 10. Fierce stuff – but hardly out of character for Cornwall and the UK. The BBC lunchtime national TV news opened by claiming it was the “worst storm for decades”. That was certainly playing fast and loose with the truth, and was also in conflict with other BBC reports being broadcast simultaneously. Why do they do that? An “agenda”? Or perhaps just an aversion to letting the facts get in the way of a good story.

    My go-to man for UK climate is Philip Eden (http://www.climate-uk.com/). I’ll be interested to see what he has to say about.

  15. Any deaths are tragic, and there are so far 4 reported including 2 teenagers.

    This was simply an Atlantic autumn gale, albeit on the stronger side, but nothing particularly notable – except the media hysteria.

  16. I telephoned my 88 year old mom who lives on the South Coast (about a mile from the English Channel) this morning to see how she weathered what my local paper called the “Worst Storm in 60 Years”. She was just fine and summarized this unprecedented hurricane strength storm thusly:

    “It’s a bit windy. But I don’t know what all of the fuss was about.”

  17. Rhys Jaggar says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:29 pm
    The above is from Piers Corbyn’s October 30day ahead forecast, for the period 29th October to 31st, for which I am a subscriber and I received the forecast on 1st October.
    The storm arrived one day early,

    I didn’t see where in the forecast the day of the storm was given. Perhaps I missed it. The forecast talks about ‘Very mild nights, days also mild’ so does not seem to be about any specific time, but rather just for the whole period, during which such a storm is a common occurrence.

  18. Commiserations to the families of the four who dies in this storm. Sadly there will be those in the Green industry who will capitalise on this and repeat the old cliché that this is “consistent” with climate change and that it is a “sign of things to come.” Sigh.

  19. We had all kinds of Storm Warnings on Front Pages, Radio and TV for the West Coast of Sweden. The wind stations told me a different story. In the end earlier this evening my wife said to me the storm didn’t even really move the leaves on the ground around… Weather hype all over the place these days.

  20. Those wishing to link this to anthropogenic global warming should note the name St Jude. Patron saint of lost causes.

  21. Nothing of note here on the Lincolnshire/Nottinghamshire border. It was windier on Sunday afternoon. Buckets of rain this morning, however.

  22. The BBC has a new ploy with regard to events like this. In their articles you will find comments like…’blah, blah, blah…this has some people asking whether there could be a possible link to climate change’. They can’t help themselves, they know cAGW is a crock but have to keep pushing the message.

  23. How about the worst storm ever recorded in British History before the industrial revolution so nothing to do with “climate change”.

    Daniel Defoe produced his first book, The Storm, published in July 1704, in response to the calamity, calling it “the tempest that destroyed woods and forests all over England”. “No pen could describe it, nor tongue express it, nor thought conceive it unless by one in the extremity of it,” he wrote of it. Coastal towns such as Portsmouth “looked as if the enemy had sackt them and were most miserably torn to pieces”. He thought the destruction of the sovereign fleet was a punishment for their poor performance against the Catholic armies of France and Spain during the first year of the War of the Spanish Succession.

    Observers at the time recorded barometric readings as low as 973 millibars (measured by William Derham in South Essex) but it has been suggested that the storm may have deepened to 950 millibars over the Midlands.

    Somewhere between 8000 to 15000 lives were lost.

    Extreme weather is not caused by CO2.

    ref: http://www.martinfrost.ws/htmlfiles/nov2008/great-storm-1703.html

  24. The BBC (Shukman) were full of praise for their buddies at the Met Office, who correctly forecast it 4 days ago, using their super-computer and state of the art weather model. No mention of Piers Corbyn and his basics physics, forecasting it 6 weeks ago. Bonuses all round at the Met Office.

  25. The Beeb hasn’t been plugging “climate change” or “weather weirding” but has been emphasizing that the storm had been predicted for days. Good old Micheal Fish has been on several times saying how they have got much better computers and models since 1987 (when he famously said that there wasn’t going to be a hurricane). The message seems to be that we can believe the Met Office.
    Both the ’87 storm and this one only really affected southern UK (mostly England), which is of course where the mainstream media live, so gets reported. Here in Cambridge the ’87 was worse – although I did need several hours with chainsaw this morning.

  26. What I would like to know is how the 102mph ‘recorded just off the Dover coast’ and reported by the BBC was in fact recorded..

  27. ‘It has been variously described as “The Storm of the Century”, “Unprecedented”, “Superstorm” and “A repeat of 1987”. I refer, of course, to the St. Jude storm that passed through early this morning and is now headed off into the North Sea.’

    Coming soon to a theatre near you:
    ‘The Perfect Storm of the Century’
    ‘The Unprecedenteds’
    ‘The Return of the Superstorm’
    ‘Superstorm Part II’
    ‘Revenge of the Superstorm’
    ‘The Day the Superstorm Stood Still’
    ‘Whatever You Do, Don’t Repeat 1987′
    ‘Fahrenheit 1987′
    ‘Deep Throat’

    Caught you on that last one, eh?

  28. M Courtney says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Let’s not downplay the seriousness of this weather event.
    Four people were killed.
    It would be right to pause and remember that.

    ========================================================================
    True.
    What I think people are reacting to is any implication that “Carbon Pollution” somehow caused it.
    It was a weather event. Sometimes the weather is good. Sometimes it’s bad. Sometimes it’s really bad. Man has little or nothing to do with causing it.
    A casualty of the CAGW hype is sometimes empathy for those effected by naturally bad weather.

  29. The design of structures in the UK are carried out using British Standards/Euro Codes as follows, and please note I have converted from metric to imperial :
    1 The basic wind speed is chosen by location and typically would be approx 90mph.
    2 This wind speed is then factored for topography, elevation and the type of structure. For open country with few wind breaks this speed could increase to over 100 mph
    3 The wind speed is then turned into a pressure.
    4 To design a structure load factors are used and this would increase to 140mph in addition material factors are used further increasing the wind speed to say 160 mph.
    Any structure which failed under the recent storm are either poorly designed or poorly constructed or a combination if both.
    Thus the wind speed recently is not unusual and the codes that identify these speeds have been in existence for over sixty years.
    The BBC recently informed us that a wind turbine blew over due to the high winds however they did not educate us on the reasons why?

  30. George Lawson says:
    October 28, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    What I would like to know is how the 102mph ‘recorded just off the Dover coast’ and reported by the BBC was in fact recorded..
    =====================

    Maybe read on a lightship or buoy. The following link displays weather stations, click on an arrow off the coast to get its name and current weather data. It may have been the Sandettie Light Vessel.

    I was using this site during the storm, interesting to watch the projections fall as the event approached. :) In the end here in West Norfolk there was prolonged rain with the occasional gust around 7am but little at 3am when the highest gusts were forecast, indeed, it was very still. Probably within the eye at that time.

    http://xcweather.co.uk/GB/observations

    Mick.

  31. lsvalgaard says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:11 pm
    Piers Corbin had, of course, predicted this one :-) or did he?

    You might even more admire labour of the younger brother Corbyn, member of the British Parliament

    Jeremy Corbyn MP @jeremycorbyn 4h
    Impressive turnout for Roma Voices event in Parliament tonight with horrific film of fascist violence in Czech Republic. Defend all rights!

  32. I live in Bournemouth, bit of rain, bit of wind, big f@cking deal.. trains were shagged, drove to hammersmith, and got the tube to my client appointment. Road was dry by Winchester..

  33. We have three more days in the hurricane season of 2013. Given zero tropical storm activity in the Atlantic, it is a foregone conclusion that the historic drought in category three or better hurricanes making landfall in the continental US will continue. This year’s hurricane season was basically the second wimpiest in my entire lifetime (and I’m 58, and the first decade of my lifetime preceded anything like decent satellite coverage and so doubtless underreported storms that nowadays are not missed, such as the little teeny storm that never even developed an eye in the middle of the Atlantic a couple of weeks ago — a “tropical storm” that you could have blinked and missed, especially back in 1960. Counting every single tropical wave and depression as observed by satellite with modern instrumentation, EVEN with this “superstorm” the Atlantic and Gulf were amazingly quiet, and the Atlantic SSTs were never particularly high even in the tropics.

    We’ve already had a killing frost in NC — a low of 30F within a single degree of the record set back in 1964 three days ago — and are bouncing along with lows substantially lower than the average. Yet we are told that “September was the fourth warmest on record”. Maybe somewhere, but not here, not in the Atlantic, not in the Arctic, and somehow Antarctica was setting records for sea ice extent at the same time the Arctic hit its minimum both early and solidly above its recent minimum extents. India is experiencing record floods — floods! — in October, a month that is usually hot and dry, long after monsoon.

    None of which means much of anything but that weather is highly variable, with some places setting records in BOTH directions and a lot more places seeing nothing unusual at all. The really interesting thing is that the weather now LOCALLY seems to greatly resemble the patterns last seen in the 1950s and 1960s, yet the claim is made that global temperatures are substantially warmer now than they were then.

    Perhaps. But not outside my door. 2013 has been definitely and systematically cooler in NC than, say, 1980 or 1988. Indeed, it has been one of the most pleasant years I can remember in the last 40, a comparatively cool summer, gentle fall, and if anything early frost. I’m anticipating a pretty chilly winter, if only because my dogs are shedding like mad, but we’ll see. Winter temperatures are dominated by where the weather comes from, around here — when we get persistent highs that pull cold air down from Alaska and Canada, the Southeast is drier and bitterly cold. If we get warmer, wetter air coming up from the Gulf, it is warmer and wetter (big surprise). If we get a perfect mixture of the two, it can be snowy, but snow in NC is a rare treat, a holiday.

    rgb

  34. Steve Jones says:
    October 28, 2013 at 1:42 pm
    The BBC has a new ploy with regard to events like this. In their articles you will find comments like…’blah, blah, blah…this has some people asking whether there could be a possible link to climate change’. They can’t help themselves, they know cAGW is a crock but have to keep pushing the message.
    ———————————————————–

    Possibly sensing lawsuits and correctly thinking that the mythical “some people” would make for a particularly difficult defendant to find.

    Greg says:
    October 28, 2013 at 1:35 pm
    Those wishing to link this to anthropogenic global warming should note the name St Jude. Patron saint of lost causes.
    ————————————————————-

    Touché

  35. A bit UK centric. Some people died in the Netherlands and Germany as well, and the storm is still on its way to the Baltic. Germany did record all-time high wind speeds at Helgoland though (191 km/h). I haven’t seen the storm being described as a once in a century (or longer) occurrence, but maybe i haven’t been paying enough attention to the British press.

  36. The German Island Helgoland in the North Sea and Borkum at the North Sea coast reported 191 km/h gusts (119 mph) and Denmark 120.5 mph. These were the highest ever recorded wind speeds in this region. Other all-time records are reported from inland stations. So it was indeed an unprecedented extra-tropical mesoscale cyclone in this region.

    Still, it is just weather. One has to consider also that some decades ago it was hardly possible to measure such very high wind speeds. In addition, studies on historical storminess indicate no long-term trend since the 1860s or even a slight decrease (e.g. geostrophic wind speed indices calculated from homogenized pressure observations).

    The media in Germany, Denmark and The Netherlands were far from hysteria. Some even didn’t mention the extreme storm at all or just did so in the evening news reporting the traffic problems and falling trees. It should be also noted that central Europe is on average very well prepared even to this high wind gusts and also storm floods. Are you equally well prepared over there in the US? It is about weather, not climate change.

  37. Here in North Hampshire we got winds just below 30mph, and a couple of short-lived showers. We hardly noticed it. Nothing like 1987.

  38. Robert Brown: While I don’t disagree with the thrust of your statement I’d like to point out that hurricane season ends 30 Nov – we have 33 more days. Just a nit, but an important one.

  39. It rained a bit on Anglesey last night, my cat was rather damp when he came in this morning for breakfast. Did not notice any wind as such, but my wife says it’s because I’m deaf and have no sense of smell.

  40. Some impressions after the storm:

    University of Göttingen, Germany:

    London Hounslow:

    Norderney (German Island, North Sea):

    Historical Wind Mill:

  41. lsvalgaard says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Piers Corbin had, of course, predicted this one :-) or did he?
    =====================================================
    Piers Corbyn did in his mid-Sept forecast. But he was a day out, 29th Oct not 28th.

  42. Gareth Phillips says:
    October 28, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    It rained a bit on Anglesey last night, my cat was rather damp when he came in this morning for breakfast. Did not notice any wind as such, but my wife says it’s because I’m deaf and have no sense of smell.
    —————————————————————————————————————————–

    Don’t let her fool you – it had nothing to do with your hearing. I was awake in Aberffraw between about 1 and 4:30 AM and it was far calmer than it’d been on Sunday morning. By the time I got up again at 8 it was threatening sunshine!

  43. Here is a light storm that did very little damage during colder times.

    The Guardian – 20 January 2011
    Weatherwatch: The Grote Mandrenke
    Few great weather events in British history were as devastating as the “Grote Mandrenke“, the great drowning of men, which took place in mid January 1362. A huge south-westerly gale originating in the Atlantic Ocean swept across Ireland, Britain, the Low Countries, and northern Germany, causing at least 25,000 deaths……As the storm reached the North Sea, it combined with high tides to produce the phenomenon most feared by coastal communities, a storm surge….

    Here is Lamb of CRU suffering from hallucinations about great storms of the Little Ice Age affecting the British Isles.

    Abstract
    Hubert H. Lamb – 1984
    [Climatic Changes on a Yearly to Millennial Basis 1984, pp 309-329]
    Some Studies of the Little Ice Age of Recent Centuries and its Great Storms
    …And so the series gives us our most reliable estimate of the magnitude of the temperature depression in England and neighbouring countries. In northern Scotland, southern Norway and Iceland there are indications of a significantly greater depression of the prevailing temperatures…..The enhanced thermal gradient between latitudes about 50° and 60–65°N in this part of the world is thought to have provided a basis for the development of some greater wind storms in these latitudes than have occurred in most of the last 100 years…
    doi: 10.1007/978-94-015-7692-5_34

    Great storms are just a thing of the present. Adults just don’t know what a great storm is. It is an unknown and exciting event. Adults used to play with virtual storms. Sheeeesh! It’s called the weather and not the climate.

  44. This man is out of his mind. Global warming will lead to more dangerous storms. We must think about the children and stop denying CAGW.

    ….From a meteorological point of view, this troublesome development in the late medieval time was the result of global cooling. When the planet cools, the cooling is especially pronounced near the poles and smaller near the equator. Along with planetary cooling, this therefore produces an enhanched thermal contrast between equatorial regions and the poles. In the northern hemisphere, this thermal contrast tend to develop especially in latitudes between about 50 and 65oN, in the zone of westerlies. This strengthened thermal gradient is the basis for development of more cyclonic storms over oceans in this zone, leading to increasing flood frequency and damage for adjoining coasts and land areas……..
    Climate4you.com

  45. It’s all hot air to me. Feeling hot, hot, hot. We must act then!

    Abstract
    Philippe Sorrel et. al. – 2012
    Persistent non-solar forcing of Holocene storm dynamics in coastal sedimentary archives
    …Here we present a reappraisal of high-energy estuarine and coastal sedimentary records from the southern coast of the English Channel, and report evidence for five distinct periods during the Holocene when storminess was enhanced during the past 6,500 years. We find that high storm activity occurred periodically with a frequency of about 1,500 years, closely related to cold and windy periods diagnosed earlier…..
    doi:10.1038/ngeo1619
    ———————-

    Abstract – Elyse Scileppi et. al.
    Sedimentary evidence of hurricane strikes in western Long Island, New York

    [1] Evidence of historical landfalling hurricanes and prehistoric storms has been recovered from backbarrier environments in the New York City area. Overwash deposits correlate with landfalls of the most intense documented hurricanes in the area, including the hurricanes of 1893, 1821, 1788, and 1693 A.D. There is little evidence of intense hurricane landfalls in the region for several hundred years prior to the late 17th century A.D. The apparent increase in intense hurricane landfalls around 300 years ago occurs during the latter half of the Little Ice Age, a time of lower tropical sea surface temperatures….
    doi: 10.1029/2006GC001463
    ———————-

    Abstract
    Laurent Dezileau et. al. – 2011
    Intense storm activity during the Little Ice Age on the French Mediterranean coast
    …The apparent increase of the superstorm activity during the latter half of the Little Ice Age was probably due to the thermal gradient increase leading to enhanced lower tropospheric baroclinicity over a large Central Atlantic/European domain and leading to a modification of the occurrence of extreme wind events along the French Mediterranean coast….
    doi: dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2010.11.009
    ———————-

    Abstract
    Hubert H. Lamb – 1984
    [Climatic Changes on a Yearly to Millennial Basis 1984, pp 309-329]
    Some Studies of the Little Ice Age of Recent Centuries and its Great Storms
    …And so the series gives us our most reliable estimate of the magnitude of the temperature depression in England and neighbouring countries. In northern Scotland, southern Norway and Iceland there are indications of a significantly greater depression of the prevailing temperatures…..The enhanced thermal gradient between latitudes about 50° and 60–65°N in this part of the world is thought to have provided a basis for the development of some greater wind storms in these latitudes than have occurred in most of the last 100 years…
    doi: 10.1007/978-94-015-7692-5_34
    ———————-

    Abstract
    Zhang, Jiacheng et. al. –
    Journal of Climate, vol. 2, Issue 8, pp.833-849
    Historical Climate Records in China and Reconstruction of Past Climates
    … 1) There were significant historical climate fluctuations in China, with a range of about 1.0°-1.5°C in recent centuries. 2) Significant decadal-scale warm fluctuations occurred during a cool interval broadly correlative with the Little Ice Age. 3) There was an increased frequency of both droughts and floods in some pans of China during the Little Ice Age. Increased frequencies of dust storms accompanied the dry phases of the cool periods….
    doi: 10.1175/1520-0442(1989)0022.0.CO;2
    ———————-

    Abstract
    Dr. Paul Reiter – 2000
    From Shakespeare to Defoe: Malaria in England in the Little Ice Age
    …Crop practices throughout Europe had to be altered to adapt to the shortened, less reliable growing season, and there were many years of dearth and famine. Violent storms caused massive flooding and loss of life. Some of these resulted in permanent losses of large tracts of land from the Danish, German, and Dutch coasts….
    doi: 10.3201/eid0601.000101
    ———————-

    Letter – Nature
    Jeffrey P. Donnelly
    Intense hurricane activity over the past 5,000 years controlled by El Niño and the West African monsoon
    …..It has been proposed that an increase in sea surface temperatures caused by anthropogenic climate change has led to an increase in the frequency of intense tropical cyclones2, 3, but this proposal has been challenged….sea surface temperatures as high as at present are not necessary to support intervals of frequent intense hurricanes….
    doi:10.1038/nature05834

  46. View from the Solent says:
    October 28, 2013 at 4:36 pm
    Piers Corbyn did in his mid-Sept forecast. But he was a day out, 29th Oct not 28th.
    Do you have a link to his forecast that gives the date?

  47. Condolences to the families of the people tragically killed yesterday!
    I was out yesterday morning and drove to North Shields, the North Sea here was calm, hardly a wave, no wind at all. At noon I was back in Newcastle and the wind came out of nowhere, definitely not severe and died out late last night. We were spared the worst here in NE England. Despite the fact that our islands are not very big, the weather can vary a great deal from region to region, but as someone said earlier, we are very South East centric. In the past we have had severe weather conditions here (one winter Newcastle was completely cut off by snow and it only got a brief mention in the national press).

  48. lsvalgaard
    Do you have a link to his forecast that gives the date?

    Piers Corbyn sells his forecasts, it’s the way he makes his living. The earlier post by Rhys Jagger says

    “The above is from Piers Corbyn’s October 30day ahead forecast, for the period 29th October to 31st, for which I am a subscriber and I received the forecast on 1st October.”

  49. Gareth Phillips, here on the hill near Llanddeusant Fri /Sat was high winds with rain showers Sunday was A lot calmer no damage no floods but a couple more of the life saving turbines packed up again !

  50. Since I dont describe to Piers’s posts, I did find the public post where he shows the Sept 17 issue.

    http://www.weatheraction.com/docs/WANews13No44.pdf He shows the estimated Oct 29-31 for the event. Just giving you guys the info.

    Mentions gale force winds for SW and also underlines “unusual development” (is this a blind squirrel finding the nut?)

  51. It is quit interesting to see how people report about not having seen the storm while no people report here who got hit by gusts of up to 120 mph. And then the conclusion is that it was just one storm of many – which it was not at all – DEPENDENT on the region. It were the highest ever measured wind speeds in a region with the longest existing station observations on Earth. But it was not the UK, it was N-Germany and Denmark. It is quite stupid to have a collection of some people looking out their window and concluding that everything is fine.

    I think it is rather worthy to discuss why the UK media is so hysteric about a still normal storm and Denmark and N-Germany is relaxed about the highest ever observed wind speeds. Any ideas?

  52. It was indeed a bit draughty in Bolton, but we get a fair amount of wing here in North Western England, we are used to it.

  53. I think the met office were right to warn us as much as they did. The storm wasn’t as big as some of those that have struck Scotland over many years but the South is so much more densely populated. Five people lost their lives, two of those possibly preventable if they had heeded the warnings (swimming in the sea and sleeping in a caravan under a tree is something their loved ones will be rueing for the rest of their lives). RIP all those people and condolences to their families. How many more would have lost their lives if there was no warning? As for Piers Corbyn – with all due respect, having purchased several of his forecasts, I honestly don’t see how he can claim his accuracy to be what it is and his on going sales nonsense is annoying.

  54. I’ve watched Corbyn’s accuracy for a number of years, such as to the extent I plan the summer round it.
    for the last 6 years he’s been exactly correct on the British summers 6/6 times, whereas the Met office managed a staggering 0/6, claiming BBQ weather whereas Corbyn predicted each time the summer would be a washout.

    Corbyn’s forecast can be known to be out by a margin of days-weeks on occasions, but he is essentially right in stating a crane should NOT have been left in the position it was over the cabinet office in London.
    If he were given more credence it wouldn’t happen.

    He actually forecast some very unusual extreme events with uncanny accuracy such as the extreme cold in the UK (down to -17C) 2010, the extreme heatwave in Russia (to +40C) and this time was perfectly correct as to the strengthening of this weather system.

    The British have a unique talent to be glib and cynical when something on the island affects them less than disaster scale (witness the British hysteria with 1 flake of snow!).

    The fact is the storm system caused very substantial damage in Netherlands and Denmark, and was expected to do the same in Finland except it tracked further south and hit Estonia where currently a large number of people are without power.

    I for one will continue to believe that the sun is going into a period of inactivity causing quite violent changes in the orientation of the jet stream and this means the UK will essentially run out of power generating capacity by 2017.

    There is a major case of negligence to be shown here.

    If you recall, (people have short memories), during the 2010 cold spell the UK came within a week of running out of gas.

  55. Orkan_Christian says:October 29, 2013 at 2:24 am

    “UK media is so hysteric about a still normal storm and Denmark and N-Germany is relaxed”
    So wall to wall TV coverage is relaxed? A subjective view, surely!

    http://www.dmi.dk/en/vejr/tjenester/varsler/vagtchefens-rubrik/

    Google Translation:
    Strongest measured hurricane in Denmark

    The very high winds yesterday was a real hurricane with 4 stations , as measured mean wind of hurricane force , which is of 32.6 m / s Highest average wind speed was measured at Roesnaes on Zealand with a mean wind speed 39.5 m / s (142 km / h ) . This is the highest measured average wind speed since the first measurements began in 1874. The previous record was 38.1 m / s (137 km / h ), which was measured during the December storm in 1999.

    The strongest winds were observed yesterday afternoon on Als , where the measuring station in Kegnaes measured entire 53.5 m / s (193 km / h ) . It is the strongest gust ever measured in Denmark . The previous record also comes in December hurricane in 1999, when measured 51.4 m / s (185 km / h ) . Compared with December 1999 hurricane , was measured to all winds stronger yesterday. The strong wind field was quite fast to pass , while hurricane in 1999 had a somewhat more protracted course .

  56. Daniel Vogler says:
    October 29, 2013 at 2:04 am
    Since I dont describe to Piers’s posts, I did find the public post where he shows the Sept 17 issue.
    It was issued 26 October. Where is the Sept. forecast?

  57. I recall the 1987 storm, Michael Fish on the news, that night, forecasting a storm, but not much else. And what a storm it was. Seven Oaks became One. The washing I hung out the afternoon before was spread all over the housing estate I lived in. On the way to work, I did not have to drive, the number of 2m girth trees downed and being cut up. This storm was nothing of the sort in terms of “extreme” for pre-winter weather for the wast coast of England/Wales then. It is now.

  58. ***
    Robert Brown says:
    October 28, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    The really interesting thing is that the weather now LOCALLY seems to greatly resemble the patterns last seen in the 1950s and 1960s, yet the claim is made that global temperatures are substantially warmer now than they were then.

    Perhaps. But not outside my door. 2013 has been definitely and systematically cooler in NC than, say, 1980 or 1988.
    ***

    Similar here in the mid-Appalachians. Mid-1950s to late 60s featured dry yrs w/hot, dry summers & cold winters (some w/alot of snow — 1961). I’ve measured less than 30″ rain so far this yr, but not even showing drought on the drought monitor! The reason I believe was well-spaced rains, but also due to the lack of 50s-60s-style heat/evaporation — the highest temp here was a mere 91F & it only got to 90F three days the whole summer! For comparison, July 1934 reached a state record 109F near me, and July 1966 produced 104F (I remember as a kid playing on burnt lawns). And those yrs had similar rainfalls as this yr.

    The notable aspect of 1990s-to-present climate here isn’t temperature at all, but that avg annual rainfall locally increased 10% from the 1930s — mid-1970s averages (back to what they were previously around 1900). If the local climate reverts to 50s-60s style, rainfall will generally decrease & climate will become more continental/extreme.

  59. M Courtney says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Let’s not downplay the seriousness of this weather event.
    Four people were killed.
    It would be right to pause and remember that.

    Yes – absolutely.

    However, there is room for joy, that there were only 4 deaths… NOT 40, or 400, nor 4000 and especially not the 15,000 of 1703. We must mourn and bury our dead, but keep in mind – It could have been much worse without early warning and wealth available for recovery. GK

  60. lsvalgaard says:
    October 28, 2013 at 12:11 pm
    Piers Corbin had, of course, predicted this one :-) or did he?

    Leif, I think we have to wait and see for sure, when October prediction will be archived ;)
    – – –
    Piers Corbyn forecast Archive!>

    http://www.weatheraction.com/pages/pv.asp?p=wact46

    Piers Corbyn Storm Causes UK Chaos as Predicted – 6 Weeks Ahead!>

    http://principia-scientific.org/latest-news/360-piers-corbyn-storm-causes-uk-chaos-as-predicted-6-weeks-ahead.html

    Comments from Piers!>

    http://www.weatheraction.com/displayarticle.asp?a=594&c=5

    Header page!>

    photo/1

    A 6-month analysis of the weather forecasts of Piers Corbyn!> http://www.themaverickman.com/#/weatheraction-analysis/4574723723

  61. Hey, Paul?

    You brits are such wimps – why right here in sunny southern Alberta we’ve enjoyed “the flood of the century” roughly every 12 tyears since 1895. Well, at least according to the official organs: Environment Canada and The Calgary Herald. -:)

  62. graphicconception says:

    October 28, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    I live about 130 miles from London and we saw nothing of it here.
    It is big news because it affected the south east where most of the national media are based.

    -=-=-=-=
    Auto agrees, in spades – but, too, a lot of the population live here [Yeah, I'm in London.] too.

    London population – depending on who you believe – is 8.3 to 13+ million – or, looking at the ride to work area [which, necessarily, includes bits of Wales, France & Scotland, perhaps NI, plus chunks of England too] – some 20 plus million – at least.
    London was the sixth biggest city for French voters last time round for President.
    it’s magic to work with determined, talented, folk – whatever their hailing .

    It’s probably about there for other nations world-wide.
    see

    http://www.citypopulation.de/world/Agglomerations.html

    Thanks.
    Auto

  63. .@ rbg …..snow in NC is a rare treat, a holiday.
    ……………………………………..
    Come and visit higher elevations in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western NC, professor, :). School kids from New Orleans were amazed by snow flurries last week on Black Balsam Mountain, 6200 ft. Apparently they had never seen snow!

  64. That has to be one of the stupidest statement seen on here in a long while.

    More people died on the continent and the winds measured in DK breached previous long standing records.
    Today, 3 days after, there are still 4000 people without power in the border region of St Petersburg.
    Yesterday it was the turn of 20 000+ in southern Estonia.

    Just because you can’t see further than your nose on the island, doesn’t mean this wasn’t an exceptionally violent storm, particularly on continental Europe, bringing shipping to a standstill.

    I suppose you will say those experienced sea faring peoples of Northern Europe and Scandinavia are whimps as well?

  65. The significance of this storm for the UK was its track not its intensity. This time of year these storms normally occur much further north.

  66. I went through the Rendlesham Forest near RAF Woodbridge, Suffolk, in mid-1989. The effect of the 1987 storm made the forest look like a great bomb had blown it down.

  67. This was a potentially very dangerous storm. By luck it hit in the middle of the night. If it had not, then many more people would have been killed. These autumn storms occur every 2 or 3 years and have done since recorded history. Nothing unusual…. but newsworthy for sure !

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