The waters, however, are heavily used by cargo ships travelling between Asia and North America. Thousands of vessels a year ply a shipping corridor known as the North Pacific Great Circle Route. The area is also important for commercial fishing. The storm also caused some erosion of Bering Sea winter ice, already at some of its thinnest levels on record for this time of year, further disrupting a frozen landscape that walruses and some species of seals depend on. “This may kind of set back ice formation,” Brettschneider said, adding that it would likely take five or six days for the winds to calm and for cold northern air to flow back in, allowing the Bering Sea to regain some ice.
The centre of what forecasters refer to as “bomb cyclone” was measured at a record-low barometric pressure of 921 millibars, equivalent to the eye of a Category 4 hurricane beats Storm Dennis "The Menace," in February 2020 when the central pressure dropped more than 50 millibars in 24 hours, from 987 millibars early Friday to 936 millibars. According to Meteorologist Craig Ceecee, Storm Dennis was comparable to a category 5 hurricane, with winds approaching 160 mph, almost 260 kmh.