Severe easterly gale

A severe Easterly Gale over the Maltese Islands due to the huge contrast between high pressure over the Balkans caused by residing very cold air and low pressure to the south of the Maltese Islands that moved from Libya and developed due to undulating jet stream. This can be viewed on the surface pressure chart on the 4th thumbnail with a strong high of 1042hPa and low of 1019hPa in very close proximities. The day also saw heavy rain showers as indicated in the first thumbnail whereby for few moments the rain and very stormy weather looked like there was fog on the Grand Harbour. The second thumbnail shows a huge sea wave on the breakwater of Valletta where over 9 metres waves were reported. The third thumbnail shows the weather sounding indicating a very moist profile and severe gales on the lower altitudes of the atmosphere – typical sounding for a gregale over the Maltese Islands with a long sea fetch. The fifth and sixth thumbnails show the surface wind circulation over the Central Mediterranean and a report indicating high sea waves respectively. Though this was a typical Winter storm, the storm was much earlier than the usual January-February period and perhaps somewhat stronger than usual.

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