Friday, September 21, 2012

23rd Anniversary of Hurricane Hugo...

It's hard to believe that 23 years have passed since Hurricane Hugo battered the southeastern U.S.  Shortly after Midnight on September 22, 1989, the center of the category 4 hurricane made landfall on Isle of Palms in South Carolina.

At the time, Hugo was the strongest tropical cyclone to strike the U.S. in over 20 years.  Total damage from the storm was estimated at $7 billion (in 1989 dollars), and 49 people lost their lives (26 in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands).

Charleston, SC radar image at landfall

Charleston, SC was particularly hard hit.  Most buildings in downtown Charleston sustained significant damage, and widespread destruction took place on Sullivan's Island and the Isle of Palms:

Folly Beach, SC

Isle of Palms, SC

Ben Sawyer Bridge - Sullivan's Island, SC

Unknown location - Near Charleston, SC

Charleston, SC

Maximum winds of 137 mph were recorded at Charleston Naval Air Station, 108 mph at Downtown Charleston and 98 mph at the Charleston airport.  Winds of 100+ mph were widespread along the coast:

The system also produced widespread, locally heavy rainfall from the Carolinas all the way up into portions of New England.  Edisto Island, SC recorded 10.28 inches of rain for the "official" maximum:

As is the case with most major hurricanes, and particularly those that cause significant damage, injuries and fatalities, the National Hurricane Center retired the name "Hugo" and it will never be used again.

Complete track of Hugo

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is amazing how time flies. I was 19 when Hugo hit and I remember it like it was yestaday. 3 weeks of no power and water coming out of the tap that looked like Tea and smelled like Pine-Sol. If I never go that that again it will be too soon!!