Hurricane Lorenzo one of the biggest storms in the world

National News

October 4, 2019 - 5:28 PM

ORLANDO, Fla. — The 2019 hurricane season has been a year of tropical milestones.

First in August, meteorologists saw the slow development of Hurricane Dorian: It is the strongest hurricane of the year so far, and also took the title of one of the strongest hurricanes ever recorded to make landfall in the western Atlantic with maximum sustained winds of 185 mph. Dorian matched the same strength observed in the devastating 1935 Labor Day hurricane.

There are 56 confirmed deaths due to Hurricane Dorian and 600 people still missing after the storm, according to the International Medical Corps Sept. 30 report.

But 2019 saw another storm make history with Hurricane Lorenzo before it began fading into obscurity.

The once-strong Category 5 storm developed quickly in the eastern Atlantic Ocean with maximum sustained wind speeds of 160 mph, making it the strongest hurricane to develop in the eastern Atlantic, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Its strength didn’t last long, as Lorenzo soon began losing power while it approached the western Azores archipelago as a Category 1 hurricane and then becoming an extratropical storm eastbound to the United Kingdom.

The Portuguese government reported minimal storm damage with the exception of fallen trees and downed power lines, The Associated Press reported.

The hurricane season doesn’t end until Nov. 30 and more milestones are still possible.

Here’s a look back at some of the strongest tropical cyclones in history with respect to maximum sustained wind speed.

— Strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded: 1979 Typhoon Tip

Typhoon Tip formed in the Northwest Pacific Ocean on Oct. 12 1979, and was measured to have a central pressure of 870 mb with estimated surface sustained winds of 190 mph. It was also one of the largest storms in history with winds extending out 675 miles from its core and gale-force winds covering 2.4 million square miles. Some records measure the 1996 Tropical Cyclone Olivia as the strongest storm after it hit Australia. The winds were measured at 253 mph. However, it has been noted that typhoons measured between 1940 and 1960 had increased recorded wind speeds, indicating a flaw in measurement as speeds were “too high,” according to the NOAA.

— Strongest tropical cyclone to strike Canada

On Oct. 16, 1963, a tropical depression formed in the southeast Bahamas. Six days later a warm core developed and formed Hurricane Ginny. At its strongest, Ginny was classified as a Category 2 storm with winds of 102 mph. The storm teased the East Coast of the United States and drifted toward North Carolina before looping around and heading north to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, on Oct. 29. Ginny quickly became an extratropical storm upon landfall, NOAA said.

— Strongest tropical cyclone to strike Europe

While it rarely happens, there have been a number of strong storms from the tropics to take aim at Europe. Albeit many can be called strong by different measurements, it was Hurricane Faith that traveled east across the Atlantic with Category 2 maximum sustained winds of 104 mph. As the storm approached Norway, Faith lost organization and developed into an extratropical storm shortly before making landfall.