1959-NN-1

(“The Escuminac Disaster”)  † (35 Canadian fatalities)

Legend of sources

On June 20, NN-1 made landfall as a category 1 hurricane at Canso, Nova Scotia and moved over the Northumberland Strait. Winds of 130 km/h were felt upon its arrival. The storm also made landfall in Prince Edward Island as a tropical storm with winds of 111 km/h later that day. NN-1 finally made landfall over Newfoundland as a tropical storm with winds of 84 km/h on June 21.

Rainfall image map of an unnamed Hurricane or NN-1, which On June 20, 1959, made landfall as a category 1 hurricane at Canso, Nova Scotia and moved over the Northumberland Strait. The storm also made landfall in Prince Edward Island as a tropical storm later that day. NN-1 finally made landfall over Newfoundland as a tropical storm on June 21 and diminished on June 19, 1959. Maximum provincial rainfalls: 53 millimetres in New Brunswick, 20.5 millimetres in Prince Edward Island, 109 millimetres in Nova Scotia and 20.5 millimetres in Newfoundland
Rainfall image map of an unnamed Hurricane or NN-1, which On June 20, 1959, made landfall as a category 1 hurricane at Canso, Nova Scotia and moved over the Northumberland Strait. The storm also made landfall in Prince Edward Island as a tropical storm later that day. NN-1 finally made landfall over Newfoundland as a tropical storm on June 21 and diminished on June 19, 1959. Maximum provincial rainfalls: 53 millimetres in New Brunswick, 20.5 millimetres in Prince Edward Island, 109 millimetres in Nova Scotia and 20.5 millimetres in Newfoundland

Hurricane NN-1 developed west of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico. It began on June 18, 1959 and strengthened into a category one hurricane. At this point NN-1 entered the CHC Response Zone with winds of 129 km/h. NN-1 claimed the lives of 35 men, most of these fishermen from Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick. Fishing gear was badly destroyed, boats were lost, and damage to personal property occurred. Hurricane NN-1 diminished on June 19th.

  • The storm was reported to be accompanied by the highest tide since 1940 (HH)
  • 120 km/h winds (CDD)
  • 22 fishing boats were lost (CDD)
The Escuminac storm started tracking in the Canadian Hurricane Centre response zone south of Nova Scotia and turned northwest and made landfall over the Canso Causeway and out over the Northumillibarerland Strait with winds of 64 knots northwest of storm centre. It then turned back toward the southeast and made landfall again in southwest Cape Breton before moving out into the Canso Strait while skimming southern Avalon Peninsula and out into the Atlantic. As it tracked through Atlantic Canada the storm reached a maximum wind speed of 70 knots, with an mslp of 974 millibar
The Escuminac storm started tracking in the Canadian Hurricane Centre response zone south of Nova Scotia and turned northwest and made landfall over the Canso Causeway and out over the Northumillibarerland Strait with winds of 64 knots northwest of storm centre. It then turned back toward the southeast and made landfall again in southwest Cape Breton before moving out into the Canso Strait while skimming southern Avalon Peninsula and out into the Atlantic. As it tracked through Atlantic Canada the storm reached a maximum wind speed of 70 knots, with an mslp of 974 millibar

New Brunswick

June 22, 1959

  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) reported that two bodies were washed upon the shore near Richibucto (G)
  • 12 people reported dead (G)
  • Five of the known dead who were recovered were from Baie Sainte Anne (G)
  • Two of the known dead were recovered from Bay du Vin (G)
  • The captain of fishing vessel is presumed dead after his boat capsized.The two other crewmembers were rescued (TJ)
  • Winds of 120 km/h were felt throughout the province (G)
  • In Shediac, 40 mm of rain fell in a 24 hour period (HH)
  • 15 m waves were reported (G)
  • Heavy seas washed over the protective basin formed by a wharf and breakwater at Point du Chene and resulted in the sinking several fishing boats tied to the wharf. Many other boats in other harbours around the province have also been battered (G)
  • Search and Rescue reported that 22 derelicts were found between Point Escuminac and Richibucto (G)
  • Hulks were washed ashore and others were sunken in shallow water (G)
  • Point du Chene had damage to cottages and pleasure boats. In addition, many lobster pots on the wharf were damages (HH)
  • Fishing boats lost were about $2,200 in value and a salmon net cost $1,500. Most fishermen caught in the storm lost their nets. In addition, more then 12,000 lobster pots lost valued at$60,000 (HH)
  • Communications between areas was disrupted and delayed (HH)

June 23, 1959

  • 35 people were officially listed as dead Monday night (G)
  • Destroyed about a third of the Miramichi area Salmon Fleet (TJ)
  • About 45 boats were reported in the strait when the gale began (TJ)

June 24, 1959

  • 11 bodies have been recovered of the 35 dead (HH)
  • 22 boats are missing and accounted as wrecked (HH)

Nova Scotia

June 22, 1959

  • One fishing boat was reported smashed at Kempt’s Point. Others, where thrown upon the beach and damaged (HH)
  • Richmond Coast had loss of telephone communication and L’Ardoise was the nearest available communication point (HH)

June 24, 1959

  • The coast in Cape Breton was dotted with wreckage of boats and lobster pots that were torn from their moorings (TJ)
  • Storm cost Cape Breton fishermen thousands of dollars (TJ)
  • In Petit de Grat, eight fishermen who shared a $15,000 fishing net had it completely destroyed. Also, a salmon net and a gill net were destroyed valued at $1,500 and$200 each (TJ)
  • In Gabarouse, lobster traps were damaged and many small crafts were battered and sunk (TJ)
  • Four boats out of Capelin Cove were reported wrecked (TJ)
  • The storm smashed fishing boats, lobster traps and fishing nets along the coast of Cape Breton (TJ)

PrinceEdward Island

June 22, 1959

  • A Prince County fisherman was presumed dead and another injured as the storm passed by (G)
  • Summerside reported 72 km/h winds gusting to 105km/h at 4:00 am ADT on Saturday, June 20 (TJ)
  • Sea Cow Pond, 5 km from the northern tip of Prince Edward Island was a picture of disaster and destruction (G)
  • Broken ribs of a boat at Sea Cow Pond were all that remain of a ship that was wrecked. In addition, motors were torn away from the boat and buried in sand (G)
  • There were large losses to fishermen. 5,000 traps were lost in Souris to the Launching Place area. There were similar loses to Murray Harbour and Alberton areas (HH)
  • Five vessels were destroyed at Alberton and one badly damaged at Sea Cow Pond (HH)
  • Extensive damage to fishing gear extended from North Cape to Wood Islands (G)
  • Estimates of $750,000 of damage (G)
  • Four boats where ashore and wrecked at Sea Cow Pond (HH)

June 23, 1959

  • Amandale and Launching fishermen received heavy losses (G)
  • Sturgeon and Gaspereaux area fishermen lost less as their gear was in deeper water (G)
  • No boats were lost between Tracadie and Tustic, however the gear had more damage near Rustico (G)
  • One $4,000 trap was lost off Herring Cove near Fortune and owned by the provincial government (G)
  • 25–50% of the inshore traps were either missing or destroyed (G)