The rogue wave that swelled off British Columbia in November 2020 has been confirmed to be the largest rogue wave ever recorded.
Turns out we measured the most extreme rogue wave ever recorded. More to come on this! #coastalintelligence @uvic #blueeconomy #marinesafety @UVicInnovation @ForesightCAC @AlacrityClean @dsaltd @CTVNews @CBCQuirks @cbcnewsbc https://t.co/a4Iw5jfoY3
— MarineLabs (@MarineLabsdata) February 8, 2022
The wave that crashed in the waters of British Columbia, Canada was a 58-foot-tall enormous wave. As per scientists, the wave that struck off the coast of Vancouver Island reached the height of a four-story building, roughly. A detailed study on the characteristics of the wave was published on February 02 in the Journal Scientific Reports.
What is a Rogue Wave?
A rogue wave is defined as one that is more than twice the height of the waves around it. For centuries, “rogue waves” were considered nothing more than nautical folklore, but in 1995, on the first day of January, a 26-meter-high wave (85ft) struck an oil drilling platform off the coast of Norway.
At the time, the so-called Draupner wave defied all previous scientific models. Since then, a dozen rogue waves have been recorded, some even in lakes. Their tendency to occur unexpectedly and with huge force makes them especially dangerous.
Largest Rogue Wave Ever Recorded
While the one that surfaced in November 2020 was not the tallest, its relative size compared to the waves around it was unprecedented.
Johannes Gemmrich, a research scientist at the University of Victoria and the lead author of the study, said that proportional to surrounding waves, the 2020 event was “likely the most extreme rogue wave ever recorded.” She further added, “Only a few rogue waves in high sea states have been observed directly, and nothing of this magnitude. The probability of such an event occurring is once in 1,300 years.”
However, a recent study predicts wave heights in the North Pacific will only increase with climate change – meaning the 2020 wave may not hold the record for long.
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