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5 Deadliest Atlantic Hurricanes – Oddee

The hurricane season in the Atlantic lasts from June to November. It’s half a year with huge storms with strong winds and heavy rains sweeping along the coast. As someone who grew up in the desert, fear of a hurricane wasn’t a thought until I saw the damage Katrina had done. The Category 5 storm destroyed New Orleans, flooding the levees, and changing the course of the city’s history.

As climate change worsens, so does the hurricane season. Every year there are more tornadoes, forest fires, hurricanes, and blizzards. In fact, any extreme weather poses a real threat, causing millions in damage and potentially thousands of lives.

5 deadliest Atlantic hurricanes

Great hurricane of 1

Category 5: 22,000 to 27,500 dead

Photo by Matt Hardy on Unsplash

The deadliest hurricane in the Atlantic ever recorded had winds of 200 miles per hour lashing around its interior. It landed in Barbados before heading over the Lesser Antilles. The storm took place during the War of Independence when the British were in control of the Atlantic.

The storm devastated the islands on its way and severely damaged the British Navy from Cuba to New York. They lost over 20 ships, including crews, to the storm.

Mitch, 1998

Category 5: 11,000 to 19,000 dead

Photo by Siednji Leon on Unsplash

Mitch was powerful and slow, causing flooding and devastation to infrastructure across Central America. In Honduras, where most of the deaths occurred, the storm set back half a century by destroying homes and causing severe flooding. After winding through Nicaragua and Guatemala, the hurricane crossed the Gulf of Mexico and crossed Florida.

While 11,000 died in the storm, thousands were missing and millions across Central America were homeless.

Fifi-Orlene, 1974

Category 2: 8.210

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash

Fifi took off south of Jamaica and landed in Belize. It was nearly 300 miles wide and with winds of up to 105 miles per hour. The storm hit nine countries as it crossed Central America, but caused the greatest devastation in Honduras. After three days of constant rain, between two and five thousand people died in a single city in floods.

After two days, Fifi entered the Pacific, where it was renamed Orlene, before moving up the coast of Mexico.

Flora, 1963

Category 4: 7,193 deaths

Photo by Michael Dam on Unsplash

Flora plunged into the Caribbean from 800 miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands. It crossed the island of Tobago shortly after achieving hurricane status. From October 3rd to 9th, Flora crossed Haiti, Cuba and the Bahamas. The interior of the storm contained gusts of wind of 145 miles per hour.

Five feet of rain fell in Jamaica, causing landslides and destroying homes.

Galveston, 1900

Category 4: 8,000 to 12,000 deaths

Photo from NASA on Unsplash

Hurricane Great Galveston remained a weak tropical storm through the Caribbean until it reached the Gulf of Mexico. The winds inside the hurricane reached 145 mph when it landed in Galveston.

It strengthened as it moved through the American Midwest and crossed New England and Canada before reentering the Atlantic at the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. Witnesses in Iceland discovered their final problems.

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