The Malta Independent 29 February 2024, Thursday
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Last weekend’s bad weather now classified as a tropical storm

Thursday, 3 November 2016, 07:39 Last update: about 8 years ago

Independent weather forecasters said that the storm which hit the Maltese islands last weekend was part of a Tropical Storm. This has now confirmed officially by the US Hurricane Centre which tracks such storms around the world. stated that typically such tropical storms only form in the Atlantic or Pacific Ocean and not over the Mediterranean sea. This system began on Saturday 29 October as an area of low-pressure which formed eastwards of the Maltese islands.

During the next day, on Sunday 30 October, the thunderstorms morphed into a subtropical storm defined by a broad wind field. The thunderstorm clusters later became more unified and formed a tropical storm.

The storm dissipated by Monday 31 October, not before hitting Malta, albeit not directly.  Damage would have been considerably more if the tropical storm had hit directly.  The system later moved onto the Greek island of Crete. stated that usually such storms do not form over the Mediterranean because it is too cool, when compared to the Atlantic / Pacific oceans where such tropical storms are quite common. This anomaly however was the result of an exceptionally warm Mediterranean Sea compared to previous years. The water temperature is around 5 to 6 degrees above average for this time of year, this is definitely caused by global warming and climate change.

Regrettably we will see more such storms in the years to come, if this current climate change trend continues and is not reversed at once, the website said.

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