Tropical cyclone season summary for 2016


The 2016 tropical cyclone season in the Atlantic Basin was unique in several ways. On January 12, Hurricane Alex formed—the first Atlantic hurricane to form in January since Hurricane Alice in 1955. Tropical Storm Colin’s formation on June 5 marked the earliest third named storm on record in the Atlantic Basin. Colin exceeded the previous record set in 1887 by seven days. In addition, Hurricanes Matthew and Nicole represented the first time that two category-4-or-stronger hurricanes occurred in October since record keeping began. Despite these rare characteristics of the 2016 Atlantic hurricane season, tropical cyclone impacts to Canadian territory were relatively minimal.

In 2016, the Canadian Hurricane Centre issued 44 hurricane statements about six tropical cyclones that entered the Canadian response zone.

The six storm events were:

  • Tropical Storm Colin – Colin tracked across the Grand Banks, on June 8, with minimal impacts on Canadian territory. No public warnings were issued; however, gale warnings were in effect over the Grand Banks, bringing waves of three to five metres.
  • Tropical Depression 8 This storm had no impacts on land. The Canadian Hurricane Centre issued 10 information statements for this event that brought gale-force winds over the extreme southern Grand Banks, with maximum waves of four metres.
  • Hurricane Gaston This storm had no impact on Canadian territory; however, the Canadian Hurricane Centre issued one bulletin to inform Canadians there would not likely be any impact.
  • Tropical Storm Hermine Impacts from Hermine were minimal. The Canadian Hurricane Centre issued eight information statements. Swell waves of two to three metres occurred along the south shore of Nova Scotia, and there were gale-force winds and waves of up to six metres, over extreme southwestern marine areas.
  • Hurricane Matthew Although Hurricane Matthew had no direct impact on Canadian territory, the indirect impacts were substantial. Wind and rain from a separate low-pressure system, energized by moisture from Matthew, toppled trees, damaged homes, flooded roads and residences, and caused some roads to be washed out. The hardest hit areas were Cape Breton and Newfoundland. Two information statements were issued by the Canadian Hurricane Centre.
  • Tropical Storm Nicole This storm had no impacts on Canadian-land areas, except for an extended period of swell waves along south-facing shorelines. Mariners had to be prepared for gale-force winds over extreme southeastern waters. The Canadian Hurricane Centre sent 11 information statements about the storm. Gale warnings were issued for Laurentian fan and the southern Grand Banks.

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