Hurricane Fabian - 2003
(Front Street, Hamilton - taken during the hurricane)
|Bermuda moves into "Hurricane
Season" from June through November, each year. Unfortunately,
some folks put off taking a vacation here, at that time, because
they feel a hurricane will strike. Actually, Bermuda isn't
really affected that much by hurricanes and they usually pass by the
island no closer than about 60 or 70 miles, if they come this way at
all. Statistics show the island is brushed or hit by a
hurricane only every 2.88 years.
Hotels, guest houses and private homes are constructed out of either island coral or cement block, and built very strong to withstand any possibility of high winds. Storm destruction is normally limited to falling branches, and power outages only happen when wires are obstructed by overgrown trees, etc. Some of the more serious destruction can happen to marine craft, which may break away from their moorings, if not properly secured.
During the past century, Bermuda has had a brush with, or been directly hit by, a hurricane only 7 times, the last being Hurricane Fabian, in 2003. Fabian was a Category 3 hurricane and the highest recorded winds were 102kts, with gusts to 110kts. Until then, there had been no life-threatening injuries due to the fact that Bermudians, for the most part, are always well prepared during these times.
Although there are many well-educated folks in the weather industry, who use sophisticated equip-ment to monitor and predict weather conditions, the Bermudian 'old timers' have their own way of getting ready for a big storm -shark oil! That's right, you'll find many a bottle of shark oil in homes throughout the island. The oil remains clear in normal conditions and will get cloudy when stormy weather is on its way. But, if the oil turns milky white - look out.... a hurricane is approaching!
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