Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

Boats are seen along the waterfront in Halifax as Hurricane Dorian approaches, on Sept. 7, 2019.

Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press

As the Canadian Hurricane Centre warned of another active hurricane season Friday, one of the country’s top meteorologists said the COVID-19 pandemic could make it more difficult for people to prepare for a long line of tropical storms.

“I think this year is going to be particularly important to have those preparations completed prior to the arrival of a storm because of all the other situations we’re facing,” Bob Robichaud said during the centre’s annual pre-season briefing.

“What we usually see when a storm is approaching – just one or two days prior to the storm – is lineups at stores. That is the thing you’re really going to want to avoid this year – being caught in some of those lineups.”

Story continues below advertisement

Robichaud said there are a number of factors behind the prediction for an active season, including the fact that ocean surface temperatures are slightly above average. The warmer the water, the more energy there is to feed a storm.

As well, reduced vertical wind shear over the Atlantic will make it less likely that tropical storms will be pulled apart as they are forming and growing.

Meanwhile, the U.S.-based National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is also predicting an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season.

The American agency said Thursday it is expecting 13 to 19 named storms – six to 10 of which could become hurricanes. The average number of named storms is 12, of which six typically become hurricanes.

As well, NOAA is predicting three to six major hurricanes churning out winds at 178 kilometres per hour or higher. On an average season, only three major storms develop over the Atlantic.

Last year’s hurricane season was also active, producing 18 named storms and three major hurricanes.

Among the most powerful was hurricane Dorian, which left a swath of devastation and death across the Bahamas – killing at least 70 people – before roaring over the Maritimes on Sept. 7-8.

Story continues below advertisement

Dorian’s hurricane-force winds knocked out electricity in all three provinces, leaving more than 500,000 homes and businesses in the dark for up to a week while causing an estimated $140-million in damage – two-thirds of which was reported in Nova Scotia.

Though Dorian transitioned to a post-tropical storm as it made landfall west of Halifax, its sustained winds reached 145 kilometres per hour, putting the storm’s power almost on par with a Category 2 hurricane.

Parts of southeastern New Brunswick, eastern P.E.I. and western Nova Scotia received up to 160 millimetres of rain.

Despite the recent predictions, Robichaud said Friday there is only a slight correlation between the number of storms that form in the Atlantic and the number of storms that actually make into Canadian territory.

“In any given year, there can be a damaging storm that affects Canada,” said Robichaud, the centre’s warning preparedness meteorologist.

As an example, he pointed to the busy 2010 season. Though there were 19 named storms that year, only three headed for Canada’s east coast. However, two of those storms were full hurricanes that made landfall – Earl and Igor.

Story continues below advertisement

“You can’t always go by the total number of storms that are predicted,” Robichaud said. “You have to prepare the same way every year, as though one of those storm is going to have an impact.”

Though the Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to Nov. 30, the first tropical storm of 2020 – Arthur – formed off the U.S. east coast on Tuesday and had blown itself out in the middle of the ocean by Thursday morning.

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Coronavirus information
Coronavirus information
The Zero Canada Project provides resources to help you manage your health, your finances and your family life as Canada reopens.
Visit the hub

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies