24Feb19 Gregale Damage

A very long duration Gregale Force 9-10 winds lasting for around 36 hours between 1700 CET of 23Feb19 and 0500 CET of 25Feb19 peaking in Valletta at 4AM of the 24th with a peak wind gust of 133kmh (Hurricane Force 12) as a Mediterranean cyclone effected the Maltese Islands as per surface pressure chart on the seventh thumbnail. This produced widespread damage all over the Maltese Islands with widespread fallen trees, agricultural loss and large waves crashing over the coastline. The main image shows a large tree which had fallen down whilst the first thumbnail shows many fallen old trees at a garden nearby. The second thumbnail is a small clip of the widespread damage in the area whilst the third thumbnail shows sea swell taken on the following day at Marsascala.

The fourth thumbnail is the weather sounding showing lots of moisture and very strong winds at all levels of the atmosphere to produce a day full of nimbostratus clouds and damaging winds. The fifth, sixth and seventh thumbnails depicted the visible satellite image, the Mediterranean actual wind field and the surface pressure chart must be looked at concurrently. These prove that there was definitely no Medicane, the system was a cold-core system with the wind field being off centre. Furthermore, the centre of the low was already on land over Libya which is impossible for a medicane as it has to sustain itself over the warm waters and it also had frontal systems. The centre of the low was not particularly deep but the exceptionally strong high pressure system over Central Europe tightened the pressure gradient considerably over the Maltese Islands creating much wind damage.

For safety reasons due to blocked roads, no photos were taken at the coast but many could be found online. If the reader is in possession of sea wave photos of the day I would include giving due credit. This was once in a generation gregale event for the Maltese Islands.

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