We use the Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT) for the spectral analysis of a North Sea storm that took place in 1997. We look at the contribution of the different Intrinsic Mode Functions (IMF) obtained using the Empirical Mode Decomposition algorithm, and also compare the Hilbert Marginal Spectra and the classical Fourier Spectra for the data set and the corresponding IMFs. We find that the number of IMFs needed to decompose the data and the energy associated to them is different from previous studies for different sea conditions by other authors. A tentative reason for this may lie in the difference in the sampling rate used. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd.