Science

Bermuda begins clean-up after 120mph Nicole pays unwelcome visit

A tiki bar lays in a shamble following Hurricane Nicole, in Tobacco Bay, St. Georges, Bermuda, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016. Hurricane Nicole roared across Bermuda, pummeling the resort island with winds up to 115 mph that snapped trees and peeled off roofs before the storm spun away into open water. (AP Photo/Mark Tatem)

Clear-up work was under way in the storm-lashed island of Bermuda on Friday after it bore the brunt of fearsome Hurricane Nicole. Rescue crews were dispatched to clear roads and engineers to inspect infrastructure hours after it was battered by 120mph winds and lashing rain. The worst of the weather dissipated overnight as many of the island's 65,000 residents ventured outside, despite the government urging them to remain indoors for their own safety. "There has been significant flooding in areas around the island and some severe road damages," said National Security minister Jeff Baron. "Obviously, we are also concerned about downed trees and downed power lines, which are live."

For a storm this size, I'd say we're blessed. I don't think any part of the island was spared the wrath of Nicole. But ... it could have been much worse

Bermuda premier Michael Dunkley

Hurricane Nicole snapped trees, peeled off roofs and flooded homes as it roared across the island on Thursday. The storm also damaged boats that broke away from their moorings and knocked out power to more than 27,000 customers who live on the island. Schools and government offices remained closed on Friday, while the island's international airport was expected to open around noon. The hurricane has weakened to a Category 2 storm as it churned towards the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.

This is one of our main tasks — it’s something we do really well and we’re fully certified and well rehearsed to deal with the aftermath of a hurricane

Commanding officer Lt-Col David Curley, after soldiers were called in to help with the clean-up
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While hurricanes are quite common in Bermuda, a storm this strong is rare, said officials from the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

National Hurricane Center

The National Hurricane Center(NHC), at Florida International University in University Park, unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Florida, is the division of the United States' National Weather Service responsible for tracking and predicting weather systems within the tropics between the Prime Meridian and the 140th meridian west poleward to the 30th parallel north in the northeast Pacific ocean and the 31st parallel north in the northern Atlantic ocean.Its Tropical Analysis and Forecast Branch(TAFB) routinely issues marine forecasts, in the form of graphics and high seas forecasts, for this area year round, with the Ocean Prediction Center having backup responsibility for this unit.

Topic in-depth

Nicole live: storm moves on, Causeway shut

Hurricane Nicole, now at Category 2, is continuing farther out into the Atlantic, with the National Hurricane Centre at 5pm putting its eye 114 nautical miles northeast of the island.
Royal Gazette