Bomb Cyclone With Hurricane Winds Knocks Out Power to 500,000 and Disrupts Travel in the Northeast


More than a half-million people in the Northeast woke up to darkness on Thursday, as an unseasonably strong Nor’easter slammed the region with rain and high winds.

Utility poles snapped, cruise ships sought shelter, boats broke from their moorings, trees were uprooted, and more than 500,000 customers in New England were without power early Thursday as the bombogenesis with winds gusting up to 90 miles an hour swept up the East Coast.

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Bomb cyclone hits New Engalnd on October 17, 2019 leaving more than 500000 people without electricity. Picture via CNN

The bomb cyclone is now parked over southern New England with the pressure equivalent to a Category 2 hurricane and promises to disrupt travel in the region through the end of the workweek.

The pressure of the bombogenesis dropped 24 millibars in just 14 hours — and plummeted 35 millibars over 24 hours. The system broke low-pressure records for October in Boston; Providence, Rhode Island; Hartford, Connecticut; and Portland.

The storm’s heaviest rain fell in upstate New York, where up to 5 inches was recorded. The Mid-Atlantic states and much of the Northeast got 1 to 2 inches of rain.

Bombogenesis Triggers Widespread Power Outages And Plane Cancelations

More than 550,000 customers in New England are without electricity Thursday’s morning.

  • Over 225,000 households and businesses in Massachusetts were in the dark on Thursday morning.
  • In Maine, more than 196,000 households and businesses were without power Thursday morning, while in New York the number was about 41,000.

At least 50 flights have been canceled Thursday at Boston Logan International Airport, reports, with more delays and cancellations expected through late Friday.

Powerful Winds and Rain

Wind gusts of 40 to 50 mph are expected to punish New England for much of Thursday.

  • Provincetown, on Massachusetts’ Cape Cod, already has been lashed with winds of 90 mph.
  • Boston Logan recorded gusts of 70 mph overnight into Thursday.
  • Gusts atop Mount Washington in New Hampshire were clocked at 125 mph.
  • New York City, Boston and Portland, Maine, may feel winds of at least 39 mph.

The bomb cyclone is the second coastal storm to impact New England in a week. Last week’s storm sat off the coast of the Mid-Atlantic, churning up seas and bringing a strong onshore wind that shredded beaches up and down the East Coast. It caused costly damage due to beach erosion and coastal flooding. [CNN, KTLA, NYT, FlightAware]

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