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CINDY DAY: Hurricane Hang-ups

Wind and rain will move in Tuesday morning as Hurricane Teddy races towards Eastern Nova Scotia. - WSI
Wind and rain will move in Tuesday morning as Hurricane Teddy races towards Eastern Nova Scotia. - WSI

The darn thing about print is that there are deadlines.  It’s Sunday afternoon, I’ve been following Teddy for almost a week and we’re finally getting down to the crunch.  Instead of focusing on details right now – mostly because of those deadlines - I want to share a few thoughts on this storm. 

As far as hurricanes go, there have not been many surprises with this one – slight changes that we like to call wobbles, but no big surprises... yet. 

It wouldn’t be prudent to try to give you an exact landfall right now but I do want to stress how strongly I feel about the perceived importance of landfall. In my opinion, it can be dangerous to put too much focus on the eye of the storm and a specific landfall location. At 5 pm Sunday, Hurricane Teddy measured 800 km in diameter. To give you an idea; as the crow flies, it’s 500 km from Halifax to Cheticamp, and about the same distance from Charlottetown, P.E.I. to Deer Lake, N.L.  

It’s a sprawling storm: tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km from the eye of the storm and will impact portions of all four Atlantic Canadian provinces.  

I’m also not a fan of putting too much emphasis on the category of a storm as it makes landfall.  Teddy has been churning over open Atlantic waters for almost a week. It was a Category 4 hurricane for a day or so, spending days over very warm water and travelling with a lot of energy.  Sure, wind shear and cooler water will knock some of the steam out of the storm, but expect Teddy to race across Eastern Nova Scotia and Western Newfoundland as a dangerous post-tropical storm. 

Instead of getting hung up on labels and location, we should look at the bigger picture and prepare for a powerful punch.  

Cindy Day is the chief meteorologist for SaltWire Network

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