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1984–85 South Pacific cyclone season

The 1984–85 South Pacific cyclone season was an above-average tropical cyclone season, with nine tropical cyclones occurring within the basin between 160°E and 120°W. The season ran from November 1, 1984, to April 30, 1985, with tropical cyclones officially monitored by the Fiji Meteorological Service (FMS), Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) and New Zealand's MetService. The United States Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) and other national meteorological services including Météo-France and NOAA also monitored the basin during the season. During the season there was nine tropical cyclones occurring within the basin, including three that moved into the basin from the Australian region. The BoM, MetService and RSMC Nadi all estimated sustained wind speeds over a period of 10-minutes, which are subsequently compared to the Australian tropical cyclone intensity scale, while the JTWC estimated sustained winds over a 1-minute period, which are subsequently compared to the Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale (SSHWS).

1984–85 South Pacific cyclone season
1984-1985 South Pacific cyclone season summary.jpg
Season summary map
Seasonal boundaries
First system formedDecember 26, 1984
Last system dissipatedMarch 20, 1985
Strongest storm
NameHina
 • Maximum winds220 km/h (140 mph)
(10-minute sustained)
 • Lowest pressure910 hPa (mbar)
Seasonal statistics
Total depressions9
Tropical cyclones9
Severe tropical cyclones5
Total fatalities37
Total damage> $40 million (1985 USD)
Related articles
South Pacific tropical cyclone seasons
1982–83, 1983–84, 1984-85, 1985–86, 1986–87

Contents

Seasonal summaryEdit

Tropical cyclone scales#South Pacific 

During November and December no significant tropical cyclones developed in or moved into the basin in the region,

SystemsEdit

Unnamed Tropical CycloneEdit

Category 1 tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Tropical storm (SSHWS)
DurationDecember 26 – December 28
Peak intensity85 km/h (50 mph) (10-min)  987 hPa (mbar)

An unnamed tropical cyclone existed from December 26 to December 28.

Tropical Cyclone MonicaEdit

Category 2 tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Tropical storm (SSHWS)
DurationDecember 28 – January 3
Peak intensity110 km/h (70 mph) (10-min)  975 hPa (mbar)

Tropical Cyclone Monica existed from December 29 to December 30.

Tropical Cyclone DrenaEdit

Category 1 tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Tropical storm (SSHWS)
DurationJanuary 9 – January 16
Peak intensity85 km/h (50 mph) (10-min)  987 hPa (mbar)

Tropical Cyclone Drena existed from January 9 to January 16.

Severe Tropical Cyclone EricEdit

Category 3 severe tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Category 3 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
DurationJanuary 13 – January 20
Peak intensity150 km/h (90 mph) (10-min)  955 hPa (mbar)

On January 13, TCWC Nadi started to monitor a shallow depression that had developed within the monsoon trough about 725 km (450 mi) to the west of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu.[1] Over the next day the system moved eastwards and developed further as gale-force winds developed near the systems centre before the JTWC initiated advisories on the system and designated it as Tropical Cyclone 11P during January 14.[1][2] The system was subsequently named Eric by TCWC Nadi as it moved closer to Espiritu Santo and became equivalent to a category 1 tropical cyclone.[1][3] During January 15, Eric passed near or over Espiritu Santo, as it continued to intensify before it turned and accelerated south-eastwards.[1] Eric subsequently became equivalent to a category 3 severe tropical cyclone early the next day, before an Air Pacific flight from Fiji to the Solomon Islands located the systems eye on radar.[1]

During January 17, Eric's well defined eye came into the range of Nadi airports surveillance radar, before TCWC Nadi estimated that Eric had peaked with 10-minute sustained wind-speeds of 150 km/h (90 mph).[1][3] During that day Eric's eye seemed to contract to around 15 km (10 mi) as it made passed through Fiji's Western Division and made landfall on the Fijian main island of Viti Levu about 10 km (5 mi) to the south of Nadi.[1] After the system had made landfall, the JTWC estimated that Eric had peaked with 1-minute sustained wind speeds of 185 km/h (115 mph), which made it equivalent to a category 3 hurricane on the SSHWS.[4] The system subsequently passed near or over Fiji's capital: Suva before emerging into the Korro Sea and weakening. Eric subsequently passed through the Tonga's Ha'apai islands just to the south of Nomuka during January 18, before it gradually weakened and was last noted during January 20, over 1,800 km (1,120 mi) to the south of Papeete, French Polynesia.[3][4]

Severe Tropical Cyclone NigelEdit

Category 3 severe tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Category 3 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
DurationJanuary 16 – January 28
Peak intensity150 km/h (90 mph) (10-min)  955 hPa (mbar)

Late on January 16, Tropical Cyclone Nigel moved into the South Pacific basin from the Australian region. During the next day the system continued to move eastwards and developed an eye, before it became equivalent to a modern-day category 3 severe tropical cyclone.

Severe Tropical Cyclone OdetteEdit

Category 3 severe tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Category 2 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
DurationJanuary 19 – January 21
Peak intensity140 km/h (85 mph) (10-min)  960 hPa (mbar)

At around 1300 UTC on January 19, Severe Tropical Cyclone Odette moved into the South Pacific Basin from the Australian Region.

Severe Tropical Cyclone FredaEdit

Category 3 severe tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Category 1 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
DurationJanuary 25 – January 30
Peak intensity150 km/h (90 mph) (10-min)  955 hPa (mbar)

During January 26, the FMS reported that a depression was located within the vicinity of the Southern Cook Islands about 150 km (95 mi) to the west-northwest of the island of Aitutaki.

Tropical Cyclone GavinEdit

Category 2 tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Tropical storm (SSHWS)
DurationMarch 2 – March 9
Peak intensity95 km/h (60 mph) (10-min)  985 hPa (mbar)

Gavin caused widespread flooding within the western division of Fiji, with seven people killed as a result.[5]

Severe Tropical Cyclone HinaEdit

Category 5 severe tropical cyclone (Australian scale)
Category 4 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
DurationMarch 11 – March 20
Peak intensity220 km/h (140 mph) (10-min)  910 hPa (mbar)

Hina was one of the most intense tropical cyclones ever recorded in the South Pacific basin. A 2017 reanalysis found that Hina's maximum one-minute sustained wind speeds were much higher than originally thought, estimating a peak intensity of 170 kt (195 mph, 315 km/h).[6]

Season effectsEdit

This table lists all the storms that developed in the South Pacific basin during the 1984–85 season. It includes their intensity on the Australian Tropical cyclone intensity scale, duration, name, areas affected, deaths, and damages. For most storms the data is taken from RSMC Nadi's and or TCWC Wellington's archives, however data for 03P has been taken from the JTWC/NPMOC archives as opposed to RSMC Nadi's or TCWC Wellington's, and thus the winds are over 1-minute as opposed to 10-minutes.

Name Dates active Peak classification Sustained
wind speeds
Pressure Areas affected Damage
(USD)
Deaths Refs
Unnamed December 26 – 28 Category 1 tropical cyclone 85 km/h (50 mph) 987 hPa (29.14 inHg) None None
Monica December 28 – January 3 Category 2 tropical cyclone 110 km/h (70 mph) 975 hPa (28.79 inHg) New Caledonia None None
Drena January 9 – 16 Category 1 tropical cyclone 85 km/h (50 mph) 987 hPa (29.14 inHg)
Eric January 14 – 20 Category 3 severe tropical cyclone 150 km/h (90 mph) 955 hPa (28.20 inHg) Vanautu, Fiji, Tonga 40 million 27 [5]
Nigel January 16 – 28 Category 3 severe tropical cyclone 150 km/h (90 mph) 955 hPa (28.20 inHg) Vanautu, Fiji, Tonga
Odette January 19 – 21 Category 3 severe tropical cyclone 140 km/h (85 mph) 960 hPa (28.35 inHg) Vanautu Minor None
Freda January 25 – 30 Category 3 severe tropical cyclone 150 km/h (90 mph) 955 hPa (28.20 inHg)
Gavin March 2 – 9 Category 2 tropical cyclone 95 km/h (60 mph) 985 hPa (29.09 inHg) 7
Hina March 11 – 20 Category 5 severe tropical cyclone 220 km/h (140 mph) 910 hPa (26.88 inHg) Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji 3
Season aggregates
9 systems December 26 – March 20 220 km/h (140 mph) 910 hPa (26.88 inHg) $40 million 37

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g DeAngellis, Richard M, ed. (1985). Hurricane Alley: Tropical Cyclones — January 1985 (Mariners Weather Log: Volume 29: Issue 3: Summer 1985). United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. pp. 170–174. ISSN 0025-3367. OCLC 648466886.
  2. ^ Joint Typhoon Warning Center; Naval Pacific Meteorology and Oceanography Center (1986). Annual Tropical Cyclone Report: 1985 (PDF) (Report). United States Navy, United States Air Force. Retrieved October 28, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c MetService (May 22, 2009). "TCWC Wellington Best Track Data 1967–2006". International Best Track Archive for Climate Stewardship.
  4. ^ a b Joint Typhoon Warning Center; Naval Pacific Meteorology and Oceanography Center (January 19, 2012). "Tropical Cyclone 11P (Eric) best track analysis". United States Navy, United States Air Force. Retrieved October 27, 2014.
  5. ^ a b "Summary of Major Disasters in Fiji 1985 – March 2010" (PDF). Fiji National disaster management office. 2010-10-10. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2012-09-10.
  6. ^ Hoarau, Karl; Chalonge, Ludovic; Pirard, Florence; Peyrusaubes, Daniel (2018). "Extreme tropical cyclone activities in the southern Pacific Ocean". International Journal of Climatology. 38 (3): 1409–1420. doi:10.1002/joc.5254. ISSN 1097-0088.

External linksEdit