Hurricane Floyd Reports

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Evidence of the severe flooding in eastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia This is a large file which shows two satellite images of the area, before and after Hurricane Floyd
NEW -- Hurricane Floyd Gif Animation As it approaches the coast of Florida through it's passage to New England From Sept. 14th to Sept. 17th 1999 -- Large file over 1,700 KB
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Illustration Showing Flooding potentail with a 15 foot tidal surge At Corpus Christi And South 
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"Official" North Carolina Hurricane Relief Information

North Carolina Division of Pollution Prevention and Environmental Assistance

The Disaster Center is a partner with CASI - Central Atlantic Storm Investigators. CASI is a group of over a thousand amateur and professional meteorologists, storm spotters, and weather observers from around the world dedicated to the observation and documentation of weather events

Animated Graphic showing possible Flooding from Storm Surge on the East Coast of Florida from Dayton To Stuart 600 KB file
Hurricane Floyd MPEG movie (~4.1Mb) of Floyd moving toward the NC/SC coastline
Tropical Storm Floyd heading into New England late in the day - Sept 16
Hurricane Floyd tracking inland over NC southeast coast - Sept 16
Hurricane Floyd - same image as above but closer view
Hurricane Floyd - view of storm in color enhanced water vapor channel - Sept 16
Hurricane Floyd - shortly after landfall along North Carolina coast - Sept 16
Hurricane Floyd - threatening U.S. southeast coast - Sept 15
Hurricane Floyd - over Bahamas on morning of Sept 14
Hurricane Floyd centered over Abaco Island afternoon of Sept 14
Hurricane Floyd - afternoon view of powerful Floyd (cat 4) in Bahamas - Sept 13
Hurricane Floyd as cat 4 hurricane in Bahamas from GOES - colorized ir image - Sept 13
Hurricane Floyd - same image as above but broader view - Sept 13
Hurricane Floyd - morning view of powerful Floyd (cat 4) approaching Bahamas - Sept 13
Hurricane Floyd - impressive sunset image of Floyd approaching Bahamas - Sept 12


NCDC -- Climate-Watch, September 1999
Good Floyd Report

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Hurricane Dennis timeseries (1999 August-September)
QuickTime movies, 1.5-1.9MB each

- 1999 August 28, morning
- 1999 August 28, evening
- 1999 August 29, morning
- 1999 September 1, morning

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
Hurricane Floyd first became a tropical depression on September 7th over the tropical Atlantic ocean about 1000 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. The strengthening tropical cyclone moved on a general west-northwest heading for several days...and reached its peak intensity of 155 mph...a strong category four...on the 13th while centered about 300 miles east of the central Bahamas. The eye of Floyd moved directly over Eleuthera and Abaco of the Bahamas on the 14th as the intensity of the hurricane was fluctuating between category three and four. As Floyd moved through the northwest Bahama Islands it began to parallel the southeast U.S. coast as it curved toward the north-northwest and then toward the north on the 15th. Gradually weakening...Floyd passed just over 100 miles east of the Florida coast. The hurricane made landfall on the 16th near Cape Fear North Carolina with category two winds of 105 mph. After crossing eastern North Carolina and Virginia...Floyd weakened to a tropical storm. Its center moved offshore along the coasts of the Delmarva Peninsula and New Jersey...and then on the 17th Floyd moved over Long Island and New England where it became extratropical.

Rainfall totals from Floyd were high. These rains combined with saturated ground water levels from previous rain events...including hurricane Dennis...to produce an inland flood disaster. In addition to one person killed in the Bahamas...there were 56 deaths in the United States...mostly due to drowning from fresh water floods. This makes Floyd the deadliest U.S. hurricane since Agnes of 1972. Rainfall totals were as high as 15 to 20 inches over portions of eastern north Carolina and Virginia...12 to 14 inches over portions of Maryland...Delaware...and New Jersey...4 to 7 inches over eastern Pennsylvania and southeastern New York...and up to 11 inches over portions of New England. Storm surge water levels reached as high as 9 to 10 feet above normal tide levels along the North Carolina coast. Total damage estimates range from three to over six billion dollars.

Floyd passed relatively close to the entire U.S. east coast...requiring hurricane warnings from south Florida to Massachusetts...excluding the New York City metropolitan area...which was under a tropical storm warning. The last hurricane to require warnings for as large a stretch of coastline was Hurricane Donna in 1960. In probably the largest evacuation in U.S. history...an estimated two million people were evacuated for Floyd.
The Disaster Center's 1999 Hurricane Message Board

The Disaster Center's State Pages of States affected by this disaster
Connecticut - Delaware
Florida - Georgia - Maryland - Massachusetts - New Jersey - New York - North Carolina - Pennsylvania - Rhode Island - South Carolina - Virginia -
The Disaster Center's Message Boards of States affected by this Disaster. Here you will find official notices which we have access to regarding the disaster.
Connecticut - Delaware - Florida - Georgia - Massachusetts - Maryland - North Carolina - New Jersey - New York - Pennsylvania - Rhode Island - South Carolina - Virginia : 

Hurricane Floyd Relief Photo's Hurricane Floyd originated in the eastern Atlantic and then crossed the Ocean by passing the Leeward Islands and making it's biggest impact on the Bahamas. Where it's eye passed over several of the islands. At that point it was a category 4 hurricane and it continued it's direct path towards Florida.

There was at that time a belief that the hurricane might change it's path as it encountered a trough of air coming looping down from Canada. There was a great danger, however if the theory was wrong, that a great deal of destruction would occur in central Florida. While later Hurricane Floyd would cause great damage to the States it encountered. The potential damage to central Florida dwarfed the damage that Floyd in fact later did cause. A decision was made to evacuate a portion of the coast. This decision was criticized after the hurricane later did turn away from the coast of central Florida.

Yet, if the decision to evacuate "early" can be criticized then the example of the decision to evacuate South Carolina "late" provided the perfect counter point. As the hurricane engaged in it's turn it lost some of it's power. The hurricane was not only turned away from it's path towards central Florida, but the force of the trough of air was sufficient to cause the path of the hurricane to be turned 90 degrees, and caused the eye to pass over the coast of North Carolina.

At this point it seemed to many that this hurricane which had brought words of dire warning from Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina was a nonevent. The Disaster Center even got a message from a nonprofit relief organization that it was deactivating it's preparation for response to the disaster.

We are just now learning about the scope of the damage that occurred in North Carolina. The damage that occurred as Hurricane Floyd continued through the mid Atlantic and Northern Atlantic coastal States is just a shadow of the potential damage that it would have caused in central Florida.

A great deal is learned from each of these hurricanes that impact the United States. The importance of cleaning storm drains before the Hurricane season should now be a lesson that is being learned by the people in the mid Atlantic and northern coastal communities. And every time we, at the Disaster Center, provide coverage of a disaster we learn a little better about how to provide information in the future.

The lesson we would like for you to consider is that, a hurricane can make landfall anywhere on the East and Gulf Coast of the United States. Where it makes it's impact on the coast, the potential for damage to property and lives is beyond anything, that but a few can imagine who have experienced such an event. This time a few people in North Carolina learned the lesson about the danger and risk. Some spent days on top of their houses as they awaited rescue. And the truth is that it could have been much, much worse.
A brief summary of the impacts:


North Carolina: 51 deaths; 7000 homes destroyed; 17,000 homes uninhabitable; 56,000 homes damaged; most roads east of I-95 flooded; Tar River crests 24 feet above flood stage; over 1500 people rescued from flooded areas; over 500,000 customers without electricity at some point; 10,000 people housed in temporary shelters; much of Duplin and Greene Counties under water; severe agricultural damage throughout eastern NC; "Nothing since the Civil War has been as destructive to families here," says H. David Bruton, the state's Secretary of Health and Human Services...."The recovery process will be much longer than the water-going-down process"; Wilmington reports new 24-hour station rainfall record (128 year record) with 13.38 inches and over 19 inches for the event.
South Carolina: 1 death; over 1000 homes flooded; Myrtle Beach reports 24-hour rainfall of 14.00 inches.
Virginia: 4 deaths; over 280,000 customers without electricity at some point; 9-12 feet of water in downtown Franklin; 5000 homes damaged.
Maryland: 1 death; over 250,000 customers without electricity at some point.
Pennsylvania: 8 deaths; over 410,000 customers without electricity at some point; over 4000 homeless; 2000 homes and businesses damaged.
New Jersey: 4 deaths; over 650,000 customers without electricity at some point.
New York: 2 deaths; over 80,000 customers without electricity at some point.
Delaware: 2 deaths; over 200,000 customers without electricity at some point.
The following states have reported one death each: Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont.
The Bahamas also reported 1 death with severe damage on Abaco, Cat, San Salvador, and Eleuthera Islands.

Aid and Recovery:
Congress approved $2.2 billion in aid during 1999, and the NC state legislature approved $836 million during 1999. In addition, FEMA has thus far spent $1.05 billion for aid, and the U.S. Small Business Administration has spent $459 million. Thus far in 2000, $347 million in supplemental requests have been submitted.

Andrew/Floyd
Spatial Comparison of Hurricanes Floyd and Andrew
These images were taken when Floyd and Andrew were nearly at the same location. Floyd is at least twice as large as Andrew; however, both hurricanes were Category 4 storms with sustained winds around 120 kts and a central pressure of about 933mb.
(Click on the image for a larger view)



Impact Of Hurricane Floyd On Sea Surface Temperatures
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The ER-2 Doppler radar provides a dramatic cross-section view of Hurricane Georges' eye over Hispaniola. The Dominican Republic received heavy rain during this pass, as seen in the radar image at top, and subsequent rain eventually caused significant loss of life. The rain was enhanced significantly by the  mountains
 
Cross Section
in the interior of the island. The mountains are about 2.7 km high (9000 ft) and produced what appears to be a huge thunderstorm over the mountains as shown in the blue - upward rising - moisture in the lower image. Significant research will be done to understand this very complicated interaction between Hurricane Georges and the mountains.  Credit: NASA.
The most destructive part of a hurricane is usually the storm surge. The surge effect is due to the winds of the hurricane pushing up a "dome" of water in front of the hurricane. As this surge of water hits the coastal area tides may be several tens of feet higher than normal. This wall of water works it's way up rivers to cause damage far inland. The rise in water level happens at the same time as the heavy rains associated with hurricanes. The fall of ten inches or more of rain during the hurricane is not unusual. The tidal surge and the rainfall combine to cause flooding. The damage caused by the flooding of property is the largest cost to property owners due to hurricanes. Wind damages bring about the second highest cost, due to the physical power of the hurricane. The costs due to the hurricane just start with the physical damage caused by the hurricane. The general disturbance of every day life activities in any area impacted by disaster bring about costs due to business operations being disrupted. The ability of people to work may be limited due to the shortages of the essential requirements for life, for the need to find replacement housing, for the care of family members injured or traumatized by the disaster, and for the shortage of materials essential for work. There is some delay between the disaster and the availability of funding to begin repairs. Many business within a disaster area do not reopen, because insurance may be lacking to pay for the needed repairs, and even if insurance or loans are available, they may not be enough to cover the required repairs. Damage to essential data stored in computer systems may make restarting an existing business difficult. And any disruption in a business will cause an existing business' clients to seek other suppliers, so that when the business reopens it may find itself with out it's previous patrons. Hurricanes are one disaster in which it is possible to have several days warning prior to the hurricanes arrival. As the arrival of the hurricane can be to some extent predicted, it is important to begin preparations for the hurricane as soon as we have information that it may land in a location near us. Because we can not know exactly where the hurricane will hit, it is important to listen to the local weather authorities. Local weather authorities will issue warnings and announce evacuations. Given a large scale disaster your family may be cut off from any assistance for three days. Every family should have on hand a supply of food, water, personal and medical supplies to last at least 3 days. In any disaster situation it is possible that utilities will not be functioning. For this reason, you should keep on hand a supply of cash and a full tank of fuel in any vehicle. If we live in an area that has a history hurricanes, we can and should begin our preparations for hurricanes long before we receive any notification. Consult local building authorities about any improvements that may be made to your house to lesson the likelihood of damage to the structure. The biggest factor in determining the likelihood of your properties ability to withstand damage due to winds is the date of its construction. In recent years building codes have been upgraded. As a general rule, the older the property the more likely it is to sustain damage in a disaster. Walk around the outside of your property. Inspect the trees and landscaping for objects likely to fall or to be blown away by the winds associated with a hurricane. Consider purchasing storm shutters or pre-purchasing the supplies needed to protect windows from storm damage. Since water damage is the biggest cause of property damage in a disaster you should examine the possibly of purchasing flood insurance. Just because you are outside of the recognized flood zones does not mean your home will not be flooded. The cost of reparing damage due to flooding is not normally covered by most home owners policies, but is the biggest single cause of property damage.

The States Pages include the most complete reference on the net today about State and local disaster information as well as links to State government information and Newspapers in the State

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Atlantic Hurricane Names for 1999


Hurricane Arlene Hurricane Floyd Hurricane Cindy Hurricane Dennis Hurricane Emily Hurricane Floyd Hurricane Gert Hurricane Harvey Hurricane Irene Hurricane Jose Hurricane Katrina Hurricane Lenny Hurricane Maria Hurricane Nate Hurricane Ophelia Hurricane Philippe Hurricane Rita Hurricane Stan Hurricane Tammy Hurricane Vince Hurricane Wilma