On March 20, 2019, we witnessed an unprecedented event – Cyclone Veronica’s explosive intensification. In 12 hours, Veronica intensified from 85 mph to 150 mph based upon Force Thirteen Analysis, accompanied by a pressure drop from 967 millibars to 923 millibars – a 75 mph increase and 44 millibar drop. Tropical cyclone intensification like this is exceptionally rare, though not unheard of. Hurricane Patricia in 2015 intensified in the same time frame from 105 mph to 175 mph and a pressure drop from 969 millibars to 920 millibars. Also in the same timespan, Ernie intensified 75 mph and deepened 30 millibars. This makes Veronica among a small but growing list of explosively intensifying storms.
After peak intensity, Veronica dropped 448 millimeters of rainfall was recorded in Carraba. One of the largest iron ore loading ports was closed as a result of the storm. As of April 3rd, no deaths were reported, however damages were estimated at $1.3 billion USD.