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Gert formed off the west coast of Africa, in the Cape Verde Islands, on September 11, 1999. Hurricane Gert entered the CHC Response Zone on the afternoon of September 22, moving into Canadian waters that evening. Gert was downgraded to a tropical storm on September 23 after it passed just east of the Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland. Maximum winds were 130 km/h but they dropped below hurricane strength just as Gert entered Canadian waters. The combination of winds and storm track resulted in maximum waves of 23.6 m in Canadian waters. These large waves resulted in large and dangerous surf in Placentia Bay, especially near the town of St. Bride’s.
Rainfall image map of Hurricane Gert, which entered the Canadian Hurricane Centre Response Zone on the afternoon of September 22, 1999, moving into Canadian waters later in the evening. On September 23, 1999 Gert passed just east of the Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland and then left the Canadian Hurricane Centre Response Zone the next day on September 24, 1999. No significant rainfall over Canadian land areas
Gert did not exhibit the often observed post-tropical rain pattern, as the rain area was to the right of the storm, not the left. Thousands of dollars in damage were reported in St. John’s, Newfoundland, in particular, and in Nova Scotia. The storm left the CHC Response Zone on September 24. The CHC issued 15 Hurricane Information Statements.
Hurricane Gert started tracking in the Canadian Hurricane Centre response zone at position 1 outlined in green, with winds of 64 knots and occurred southeast of Nova Scotia heading northeast. It continued tracking northeast to position 2 outlined in yellow with winds of 64 knots east of storm centre. The storm tracked north-northeast away from Newfoundland by position 3 outlined in brown with winds of 64 knots east of storm centre. As it tracked through Atlantic Canada the storm reached a maximum wind speed of 66 knots, with an mslp of 964 millibar
Some CHC meteorological data:
- The maximum wind speed reported was a gust of 122 km/h at the Laurentian Fan buoy (44141).
September 24, 1999
- 120 km/h winds over the Grand Banks (HH)
- Seas were on average 9 m high (HH)
- Three men knocked off a wharf by huge wave in St. Bride’s (HH)
- No deaths reported, but one man was sent to intensive care when a wave knocked him from the wharf into the St. Brides’s harbour (ET)
- $2 million needed to fix wharf in St. Bride’s (ET)
- Five boats destroyed and 45 boats suffered varying degrees of damage in St. Bride’s harbour (HH)
- Flights cancelled to and from St. John’s (HH)
- In St. John’s, there were power outages and uprooted trees (ET)
- Damage was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars range in St. John’s (ET)
- At a fish plant in Lord’s Cove, waves smashed in doors, ripped of siding and clapboard. The waves also washed a small shed and large fish boxes off the wharf (ET)
- Two fishing stages were washed off their foundations in Rock Harbour (ET)
September 25, 1999
- Fisherman lost gear in St. Bride’s harbour (ET)
- The St. Bride’s harbour was shut down due to excessive damage (ET)
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