Bering Sea Storm Is One for Record Books

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Post-tropical cyclone Nuri is officially one for the Bering Sea record books, and that’s saying something…

At approximately 06:00 UTC November 8, (10 p.m. AKST, Friday, November 7), the National Weather Service Ocean Prediction Center recorded the central pressure of post-tropical Nuri at 924mb over the Bering Sea.

In terms of central pressure, this storm is now one of the strongest Northern Pacific cyclones on record, the Ocean Prediction Center said. The lowest pressure ever recorded in Alaska was 925mb, recorded in Dutch Harbor, AK during a October 25-26, 1977 storm. Not anymore.

On Friday night, the NWS Ocean Prediction Center says that the central pressure deepened by 57mb in 24 hours, and 37mb in just 12 hours. A weather bomb, so to speak.

Post-tropical Nuri. Satellite image credit: NOAA
Post-tropical Nuri. Credit: NOAA

As of Saturday morning, it appears the pressure had bottomed out however. An update at 1630 UTC Saturday said that Post-tropical Nuri remains a hurricane force low with winds up to 64 knots, a central pressure of 928mb, and significant wave heights of 31 to 48 feet in the Bering Sea. Remember, significant wave heights are calculated as the average height of the highest 1/3 of waves. Individual waves could be more than twice that size (that’s 100 feet!).

Update: Despite this storm’s massive size (and record breaking low pressure), it caused relatively little damage to the small, well-equipped communities in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands. It did, however, usher in the blast of arctic air that will grip most of the nation next week.

Video – NURI’s 9-Day Loop