Buoy Detects Record-Breaking Wave in North Atlantic

Michele Debczak
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A windy day in 2013 has made history for producing the tallest wave ever recorded by a buoy, the BBC reports. According to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the wave measured 62.3 feet from crest to trough, besting the previous record by 2.34 feet.

The data was gathered by the UK Met Office’s K5 buoy, one of the service's many Marine Automatic Weather Stations. It resides in the North Atlantic between Iceland and Scotland’s Western Isles and monitors ocean conditions with help from ships and satellites. On February 4, 2013 a strong cold front with over 50 mph winds created the perfect conditions for the massive wave to sweep by. The record was recently confirmed by the WMO.

While it may be the tallest wave ever recorded by a buoy, it still doesn’t earn the title of tallest wave on record. That distinction belongs to a 95-footer spotted by a ship in the North Atlantic in 2002. Of course both of those records would be destroyed once you include monstrous underwater waves in the mix, which can reach 1640 feet in height.

[h/t BBC]