Hurricane Katrina

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Hurricane Katrina
Category 5 major hurricane (SSHWS/NWS)
Katrina peak hi res.gif
Formed August 23, 2005
Dissipated August 30, 2005
Highest winds 1-minute sustained: 175 mph (280 km/h)
Lowest pressure 902 mbar (hPa); 26.64 inHg
Fatalities 1,836 confirmed[1]
Damage $108 billion (2005 USD)
(Costliest hurricane in US history)
Areas affected Bahamas, South Florida, Cuba, Louisiana (especially Greater New Orleans), Mississippi, Alabama, Florida Panhandle, most of eastern North America
Part of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season

Hurricane Katrina was one of the deadliest hurricanes that ever struck the United States. It was the second Category 5 hurricane of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season. The storm formed over the Bahamas on August 23, where it moved west and hit Florida as a Category 1 hurricane two days later. Katrina then crossed over Florida and strengthened into a Category 5 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. The storm then hit Louisiana and Mississippi on the morning of August 29. The leftovers of Katrina then died out over the Great Lakes on August 31.

80% of New Orleans was flooded when the levees protecting the city broke.[2][3] Most of the people killed by Katrina were thought to have died from drowning.

Storm history[change | change source]

Storm path
Costliest U.S. Atlantic hurricanes
Cost refers to total estimated property damage
Rank Hurricane Season Damage
1 Katrina 2005 &10000108000000000000000$108 billion
2 Sandy 2012 &10000071400000000000000$71.4 billion
3 Ike 2008 &10000029520000000000000$29.5 billion
4 Andrew 1992 &10000026500000000000000$26.5 billion
5 Wilma 2005 &10000021007000000000000$21 billion
6 Ivan 2004 &10000018820000000000000$18.8 billion
7 Irene 2011 &10000015600000000000000$15.6 billion
8 Charley 2004 &10000015113000000000000$15.1 billion
9 Rita 2005 &10000012037000000000000$12 billion
10 Frances 2004 &10000009507000000000000$9.51 billion
Source: National Hurricane Center[4][5][6][nb 1]

Hurricane Katrina began as Tropical Depression Twelve over the southeastern Bahamas on August 23, 2005.The depression later strengthened into a tropical storm on the morning of August 24 where the storm was also named Katrina. Katrina continued to move into Florida, and became a Category 1 hurricane only two hours before it made landfall around Hallandale Beach on the morning of August 25. The storm weakened over land, but became a hurricane again while entering the Gulf of Mexico.[7]

Katrina began to gain strength very quickly after entering the Gulf, partly because of the storm moving over to the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.[8] On August 27, Hurricane Katrina reached Category 3 strength on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale, becoming the third major hurricane of the season. An "eye-wall replacement cycle" once made Katrina stop becoming stronger for a short moment, but made Katrina to become nearly twice as large in the end.

Katrina again began to quickly strengthen, reaching Category 5 strength on the morning of August 28 and reached its strongest point with maximum sustained winds of 175 mph (280 km/h) and a minimum central pressure of 902 mbar. Katrina's minimal pressure measurement made it the fourth most powerful Atlantic hurricane on record at the time, only to be beaten by Hurricanes Rita and Wilma later in the season. In addition, Katrina was also the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Gulf of Mexico at the time (a record also later broken by Rita).[7]

Katrina made its second landfall on August 29 as a Category 4 hurricane with sustained winds of 125 mph (205 km/h) near St. Bernard, Louisiana.[7] At landfall, hurricane-force winds reached outward 120 miles (190 km) from the center and the storm's central pressure was 920 mbar. After moving over southeastern Louisiana, it made its third landfall over New Orleans, Louisiana and the levees were not made to withstand that much water and ended up collapsing leading to massive flooding. Katrina kept its hurricane strength well into Mississippi, but began to weaken later, finally losing hurricane strength more than 150 miles (240 km) inland near Meridian, Mississippi. Katrina weakened to a tropical depression near Clarksville, Tennessee, but its remains were last seen around the eastern Great Lakes on August 31 when it died. The leftover extra-tropical cyclone moved quickly to the northeast and affected Ontario and Quebec.[7]

People on the roofs of their houses avoiding the flood

Related pages[change | change source]

Notes and references[change | change source]

Notes[change | change source]

  1. All damage figures are in USD amounts of their respective year.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Reports of Missing and Deceased." Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. 2006-08-02. Retrieved on 2010-04-14.
  3. Swenson, Dan D (May 14, 2005). "Flash Flood: Hurricane Katrina's Inundation of New Orleans, August 29, 2005" (SWF). Times-Picayune.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  4. (August 10, 2011) The deadliest, costliest and most intense United States tropical cyclones from 1851 to 2010 (and other frequently requested hurricane facts) . National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 47. . Retrieved on August 10, 2011.
  5. Blake, Eric S (February 12, 2013) Hurricane Sandy: October 22 – 29, 2012 , United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service. . Retrieved on February 17, 2013.
  6. (May 2013) Hurricane/Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy, October 22–29, 2012 . United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service, 10. . Retrieved on June 2, 2013.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Knabb, Richard D (December 20, 2005; updated August 10, 2006). "Tropical Cyclone Report: Hurricane Katrina: 23 – 30 August 2005" (PDF). National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 2006-05-30.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  8. Leben, Robert; Born, George; Scott, Jim (September 15, 2005). "CU-Boulder Researchers Chart Katrina's Growth In Gulf Of Mexico". University of Colorado at Boulder. Retrieved 2006-06-05. 

Other websites[change | change source]