Thursday, March 27, 2014

Wind Gusts to 103 knot/119 mph at Buoy 44027 Under Review

...Wind Gusts to 103 knots/119 mph at Buoy 44027 Under Review...

On Wednesday March 26, buoy 44027 20 nm SE of Jonesport Maine recorded several wind gusts of 103 knots, or 119 mph. While these gusts seem suspiciously high, at this time we do not have any reason to totally discount them.

Sustained winds at the buoy seem perfectly reasonable, generally running 50 to 63 knots, or 58 to 72 mph, for several hours around midday on the 26th. A weather station at Brier Island Nova Scotia about 50 miles to the east recorded similar sustained winds to buoy 44027 on Wednesday, but only had a peak gust of 76 knots or 87 mph. Bottom line, the extreme gust factor from buoy 44027 seems unlikely, but not totally impossible. Something in the vicinity of 90 mph or 100 mph would have been reasonable, but 119 mph seems a bit high. It is possible there was some channeling of the winds coming out of the Bay of Fundy, but one would expect the sustained winds to also be higher if this was the case. At this time, there are no obvious signs of equipment malfunction. Normally, there is a second anemometer on the buoy, but it was not functioning at the time so there is no second data source.

The National Data Buoy Center is reviewing the data to try to determine if any equipment malfunction occurred. We will keep you updated when we hear more.


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