Storm Clouds

 

 Sept 11, 1960 Hurricane Donna was the strongest hurricane of the year.  Donna intensified to a Category 4 hurricane early on September 6, and attained peak winds of 145 mph (230 km/h) twenty-four hours later. The storm then weakened over the next few days, making multiple landfalls in The Bahamas as a Category 3 hurricane. Donna generated severe wind gusts of up to 173 mph (278 km/h) over southern portions of the archipelago nation, and prolific rains affected the country and the nearby Turks and Caicos Islands. Several small island communities in the southern regions of The Bahamas were leveled, but no damage total or fatalities were reported.

As it neared the United States, Donna encountered weaker steering currents, turned northwestward, and re-intensified. Early on September 10, Donna made landfall on the Florida Keys with winds of 145 mph (230 km/h), the most severe observed there since 1935. Donna then weakened as it paralleled the southwestern Florida peninsula, making landfall south of Naples with winds of 120 mph (195 km/h). In the Florida Keys, coastal flooding severely damaged 75% of buildings, destroyed several subdivisions in Marathon. On the mainland, 5,200 houses were damaged, which does not include the 75% of homes damaged at Fort Myers Beach; 50% of buildings were also destroyed in the city of Everglades. Crop losses were also extensive. A total of 50% of grapefruit crop was lost, 10% of the orange and tangerine crop was lost, and the avocado crop was almost destroyed. In the state of Florida alone, there were 13 deaths and $300 million in losses.

Hurricane Andrew Aug 24, 1992   

After weakening slightly over The Bahamas, Andrew strengthened once again over the Straits of Florida before reaching the southern tip of Florida on the morning of August 24. Shortly before landfall, an instrument called a dropsonde that had been released from an aircraft into the centre of the storm recorded an atmospheric pressure of 932 millibars. When Hurricane Andrew struck the coast of Florida, the storm’s wind speed was 166.8 miles (268 km) per hour, with at least one gustreaching 177 miles (285 km) per hour. Andrew quickly traveled due west across the peninsula and diminished to a category 3 hurricane. When it made landfall in southern Louisiana on August 26, the winds had dropped to 115 miles (185 km) per hour.

 

 

 

 

Hurricane Wilma Oct 24, 2005   

struck near Cape Romano, south of Naples, with 125 mph winds.

The peak of the storm surge occurred when the eye of Wilma had already passed over the Naples area, and the sustained winds during the surge were less than 40 mph (64 km/h).[11] One person died in rural Collier County due to wind-driven debris.[2][3]

The Naples Airport was severely damaged by the hurricane, while areas like Immokalee and East Naples suffered extreme and widespread roof damage to numerous homes and communities. Out of the 170 signaled intersections in Collier County, 130 were destroyed.[2] There was damage to the 90 high-rise condominiums in Coastal Naples, where some levels were blown out completely by the high winds brought by the storm. Ninety percent of all mobile homes in East Naples were destroyed, while 30% of the mobile homes in all of Collier County suffered the same fate. Widespread roof damage was evident across the county even outside the City of Naples. At least three deaths were blamed on Hurricane Wilma in Collier County, and widespread wind and water damage is commonplace. One tornado was spawned in Collier County.

 

 

Hurricane Irma Sep 10, 2017

On September 6, Irma peaked with 180 mph (285 km/h) winds and a minimum pressure of 914 hPa (27.0 inHg), making it the second most intense tropical cyclone worldwide in 2017, behind only Hurricane Maria, and the strongest worldwide in 2017, in terms of wind speed. Another eyewall replacement cycle caused Irma to weaken back to a Category 4 hurricane, but the storm re-attained Category 5 status before making landfall in Cuba. Although land interaction weakened Irma to a Category 2 storm, the system re-intensified to Category 4 status as it crossed the warm waters of the Straits of Florida, before making landfall on Cudjoe Key with winds at 130 mph, (215 km/h) on September 10. Irma weakened to Category 3 status, prior to another landfall in Florida on Marco Island later that day..

© 2017 by SMMHA.

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