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St Jude's storm, October 2013

The St Jude's day storm was a powerful storm affecting the UK and other parts of Europe in late October 2013. It caused a surge of order 1m across much of the UK south coast and in the North Sea, though since it hit at a time of low tide there was little coastal flooding as a result.

Although popularly known as St. Jude's storm (or the St Jude's day storm), it has also been named Christian (Free University of Berlin) and Simone (Swedish Meteorological Institute).

Meteorological Conditions

The storm formed from a low in the Atlantic on 26/27 October 2013, intensifying closer to Europe than was usually the case. (Unusually, predictions and warnings were available even before the storm had formed, on the 24th, e.g. here.)

The storm made landfall in the UK early on the 28th October, with wind speeds (gusts) of up to 150mph recorded. Although the UK took the brunt of the storm, severe damage was also recorded in France, the Netherlands and Denmark.

For more information see wikipedia, the met office blog.

Storm Surge and Aftermath

The storm caused a storm surge of order 1m across much of the UK south coast, then later in the North Sea. The examples below show the predicted and actual tide gauge measurements from Plymouth and Cromer in the UK. (Click to expand.) However the storm hit at a time of low tides, meaning that there was little coastal flooding as a result.

Generally speaking the UK operational storm surge model was predicting heights of the correct order of magnitude: see the examples below (retrieved from the NTSLF surge prediction site on 30/10/13).

Satellite and In Situ Data

Satellite data is available through the eSurge Database.

(Note that there is a separate database entry for the North Sea data here, as there were surges in both areas, though in practice the data is mostly the same)

Links and Further Information

General information:

News reports (selection):

Tide records:


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