(ORDO NEWS) — In November 2020, a strange wave lifted one buoy off the coast of British Columbia to a height of 17.6 meters, and only now has the four-story wall of water been confirmed as the most extreme ever recorded.
It is believed that such waves occur only once every 1300 years.
A new study predicts that with climate change, wave heights in the North Pacific will only increase.
For centuries, giant waves were thought to be nothing more than sea bikes, but in 1995 a 26-meter wave hit an oil drilling platform off the coast of Norway.
Since then, about ten such “killer waves” have been recorded, some even appearing in lakes. The fact that they appear unexpectedly makes them especially dangerous.
Even though the 2020 wave was not the highest, its relative size compared to the waves around it was unprecedented. It was more than twice the height of the waves around it.
The height of the Draupner wave was 25.6 meters, while the height of the neighboring waves was only 12 meters. Meanwhile, Uklule’s wave was almost 3 times larger than its surroundings.
“The Uklule wave is probably the most extreme rogue wave ever recorded,” said Johannes Gemmrich of the University of Victoria. “The chance of such an event occurring is once every 1,300 years.”
“The unpredictability of killer waves and their sheer power can make them incredibly dangerous to the marine industry and the public,” said MarineLabs CEO Dr. Scott Beatty .
“The potential for predicting rogue waves remains an open question, but our data helps to better understand when, where and how rogue waves form, as well as the risks they pose.”
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