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Earl vs. Juan - How do the two storms compare?

September 13, 2010 — Hurricane Earl made landfall in Nova Scotia near the boundary of Shelburne and Queens counties, about 85 km west of Lunenburg, earlier this month. The Weather Network's meterologist Chris Scott kept a close eye on the storm.

Powerful wind gusts uprooted massive trees
Powerful wind gusts uprooted massive trees

Chris Scott, meteorologist

Earl was not close to Juan in power or damage, but has been a very substantial storm, particularly for Nova Scotia.

The peak wind gust at McNabs Island (at the mouth of Halifax Harbour) was 130 km/h in Earl; it was 176 km/h in Juan. The peak wind gust at the Halifax International Airport was 120 km/h in Earl; it was 143 km/h in Juan.

For Nova Scotia, Earl was comparable to some of the most powerful nor’easters and storms of tropical origin over the last decade.

Roads were barren as Earl rumbled through
Roads were barren as Earl rumbled through

The closest comparison in wind speed for the Halifax area is to what happened with post-tropical storm Noel in November of 2007. Noel was a very powerful storm that left more than 100,000 customers without power and caused considerable difference.

While the winds were similar in many parts of Nova Scotia with these two systems, it is likely that many more tree limbs came down with Earl because most of the leaves were off the trees when Noel hit during the first week of November.

The Atlantic hurricane season is just now kicking into high gear... it could be a busy next couple months.

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