Spot the Trend- The increasing Frequency and Cost of Severe Weather Events

Celsias/ NOAA

 


 

If we look at the list of US Billion dollar weather events there is a very clear pattern visible even over the last 30 years.

The weather is the news, and these extreme weather events are becoming more frequent. Want to connect the dots ?irene

The U.S. has had 109 weather-related disasters over the past 31+ years in which overall damages/costs reached or exceeded $1 billion. The total standardized losses for the 109 events exceed $750 billion. Events are listed below beginning with the most recent. Two damage figures are given for events prior to 2011 - the first figure represents actual dollar costs at the time of the event and is not adjusted for inflation. The value in parenthesis is the disaster cost adjusted to 2011 dollars using the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The events are from the NOAA Satellite and Information Service

 

 

 

Dividing Line

2011 So Far 

Economic damage costs to date in the US exceed $35 Billion. This damage amount does not yet take into account the losses from Hurricane Irene. Here is a preliminary summary of 10 U.S. Billion dollar disasters that have occurred so far in 2011:

Hurricane Irene, August 20-29, 2011 While it will take several months to determine an accurate estimate of the damage from Hurricane Irene, there is no question it will rank as the 10th billion-dollar weather event of the year. This 10th U.S. billion-dollar disaster officially breaks the annual record dating back to 1980.

Upper Midwest Flooding, Summer, 2011 Melting of an above-average snow pack across the Northern Rocky Mountains combined with above-average precipitation caused the Missouri and Souris Rivers to swell beyond their banks across the Upper Midwest (MT, ND, SD, NE, IA, KS, MO). An estimated 11,000 people were forced to evacuate Minot, North Dakota due to the record high water level of the Souris River, where 4,000 homes were flooded. Numerous levees were breached along the Missouri River, flooding thousands of acres of farmland. Estimated losses exceed $2.0 billion as the event continues to unfold (as of 8/15). The flooding also stretched into the Canadian Prairies, where property and agriculture losses were expected to surpass $1.0 billion, at least 5 deaths.

mississippi flooding Mississippi River flooding, Spring-Summer, 2011 Persistent rainfall (nearly 300 percent normal precipitation amounts in the Ohio Valley) combined with melting snowpack caused historical flooding along the Mississippi River and its tributaries. Estimated economic loss ranges from $2.0-4.0 billion; at least 2 deaths. Below are more detailed stats, which are preliminary, as the event continues to unfold (as of 8/15): $500 million to agriculture in Arkansas; $320 million in damage to Memphis, Tennessee; $800 million to agriculture in Mississippi; $317 million to agriculture and property in Missouri's Birds Point-New Madrid Spillway; $80 million for the first 30 days of flood fighting efforts in Louisiana.

Southern Plains/Southwest Drought, Heatwave, & Wildfires, Spring-Summer, 2011 Drought, heatwave, and wildfires have created major impacts across the Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, southern Kansas, and western Arkansas and Louisiana. In Texas and Oklahoma, respectively, 75% and 63% of range and pasture conditions were classified in 'very poor' condition as of mid-August. Wildfire fighting/suppression costs for the region are also ~$1 million / day with over 2,000 homes and structures lost. The total direct losses (as of August 15) to agriculture, cattle and structures are well over $5.0 billion; both direct and total economic losses will rise dramatically as the event continues.

Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes, May 22-27, 2011 Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (MO, TX, OK, KS, AR, GA, TN, VA, KY, IN, IL, OH, WI, MN, PA) with an estimated 180 tornadoes and 177 deaths. Notably, an EF-5 tornado struck Joplin, MO resulting in at least 141 deaths, making it the deadliest single tornado to strike the U.S. since modern tornado record keeping began in 1950. Over $4.9 billion insured losses for event; total losses greater than $7.0 billion; 177 deaths.

Southeast/Ohio Valley/Midwest Tornadoes, April 25-30, 2011 Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (AL, AR, LA, MS, GA, TN, VA, KY, IL, MO, OH, TX, OK) with an estimated 305 tornadoes and 327 deaths. Of those fatalities, 240 occurred in Alabama. The deadliest tornado of the outbreak, an EF-5, hit northern Alabama, killing 78 people. Several major metropolitan areas were directly impacted by strong tornadoes including Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, and Huntsville in Alabama and Chattanooga, Tennessee, causing the estimated damage costs to soar. Over $6.6 billion insured losses; total losses greater than $9.0 billion; 327 deaths.

april tornadoes Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes, April 14-16, 2011 Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (OK, TX, AR, MS, AL, GA, NC, SC, VA, PA) with an estimated 160 tornadoes. Despite the large overall number of tornadoes, few were classified as intense, with just 14 EF-3, and no EF-4 or EF-5 tornadoes identified. Over $1.4 billion insured losses; total losses greater than $2.0 billion; 38 deaths [22 of which were in North Carolina].

Southeast/Midwest Tornadoes, April 8-11, 2011 Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (NC, SC, TN, AL, TX, OK, KS, IA, WI) with an estimated 59 tornadoes. Over $1.5 billion insured losses; total losses greater than $2.2 billion; numerous injuries, 0 deaths.

Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes, April 4-5, 2011 Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (KS, MO, IA, IL, WI, KY, GA, TN, NC, SC) with an estimated 46 tornadoes. Over $1.6 billion insured losses; total losses greater than $2.3 billion; 9 deaths.

Groundhog Day Blizzard, Jan 29-Feb 3, 2011 Large winter storm impacting many central, eastern and northeastern states. The city of Chicago was brought to a virtual standstill as between 1 and 2 feet of snow fell over the area. Insured losses greater than $1.1 billion; total losses greater than $2.0 billion; 36 deaths.


Dividing Line

---- 2010 ----

Midwest Tornadoes and Severe Weather, May 2010 An outbreak of tornadoes, hail, and severe thunderstorms occurred across several Midwest states (OK, KS, TX) in mid-May. Oklahoma was hardest hit with more than $1.5 (1.6) billion in damages. Total losses exceeded $3.0 (3.1) billion in damages/costs; 3 deaths. Special Report

Mid-South Flooding and Severe Weather, April-May 2010 Flooding, hail, tornadoes, and severe thunderstorms occurred across many Southern states (TN, AR, AL, KY, MS, GA) on April 30-May 2. Flooding in the Nashville, TN area alone contributed more than $1.0 billion in damages. Western and Middle Tennessee were hardest hit with local rainfall amounts of 18-20 inches to the south and west of Greater Nashville. Total losses exceeded $2.3 (2.4) billion in damages/costs; 32 deaths. Special Report

Northeast Flooding, March 2010 Heavy rainfall over portions of the Northeast in late March caused extensive flooding across several states (RI, CT, MA, NJ, NY, PA). The event caused the worst flooding in Rhode Island's history. Over $1.5 (1.6) billion in damages/costs; 11 deaths. Special Report

Dividing Line

---- 2009 ----

Southwest/Great Plains Drought Entire year, 2009. Drought conditions occurred during much of the year across parts of the Southwest, Great Plains, and southern Texas causing agricultural losses in numerous states (TX, OK, KS, CA, NM, AZ). The largest agriculture losses occurred in TX and CA. Estimate of over $5.0 (5.3) billion in damages/costs. Special Report

Western Wildfires Summer-Fall 2009. Residual and sustained drought conditions across western and south-central states resulted in thousands of wildfires. Most affected states include CA, AZ, NM, TX, OK, and UT. National acreage burned exceeding 5.9 million. Over 200 homes and structures destroyed in the California "Station" fire alone. Over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damages/costs (including annual fire suppression costs); 10 deaths. Special Report

Midwest, South and Eastern Severe Weather June 2009. Sustained outbreak of thunderstorms and high winds from a strong derecho event over the central, southern, and eastern states (TX, OK, MO, NE, KS, AR, AL, MS, TN, NC, SC, KY, PA). Over $1.1 (1.2) billion in damages/costs; no deaths reported. Special Report

South/Southeast Tornadoes and Severe Weather April 2009. Outbreak of tornadoes, hail and severe thunderstorms over the south and southeastern states (AL, AR, GA, KY, MO, SC, TN) with 85 confirmed tornadoes. Over $1.2 (1.3) billion in damages/costs; 6 deaths. Special Report

Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes March 2009. Outbreak of tornadoes over central and southern states (NE, KS, OK, IA, TX, LA, MS, AL, GA, TN, KY) with 56 tornadoes confirmed. Over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damages/costs with majority of damage in TX; no deaths reported. Special Report

Southeast/Ohio Valley Severe Weather FFebruary 2009. Complex of severe thunderstorms and high winds across the region (TN, KY, OK, OH, VA, WV, PA). Over $1.4 (1.5) billion in damages/costs with majority of damage in OK and OH; 10 deaths. Special Report

Dividing Line

---- 2008 ----

Widespread Drought Entire year, 2008. Severe drought and heat caused agricultural losses in areas of the south and west. Record low lake levels also occurred in areas of the southeast. Includes states of CA, TX, NC, SC, GA, and TN. Estimate of over $2.0 (2.1) billion in damages/costs. Special Report

Hurricane Ike September 2008. Category 2 hurricane makes landfall in Texas, causing considerable storm surge in coastal TX and significant wind and flooding damage in TX, LA, AR, TN, IL, IN, KY, MO, OH, MI and PA. Severe gasoline shortages occurred in the southeast US due to damaged oil platforms, storage tanks, pipelines and off-line refineries. Estimate of over $27.0 (28.4) billion in damages/costs; 112 deaths; dozens of people missing.Special Report

Hurricane Gustav September 2008. Category 2 hurricane makes landfall in Louisiana causing significant wind, storm surge, and flooding damage in AL, AR, LA, and MS. Estimate of at least $5.0 (5.3) billion in damages/costs; 43 deaths. Special Report

Hurricane Dolly July 2008. Category 1 hurricane makes landfall in southern Texas causing considerable wind and flooding damage in TX and NM. Over $1.2 (1.3) billion in damages/costs; 3 deaths. Special Report

US Wildfires Summer-Fall 2008. Drought conditions across numerous western, central and southeastern states (AK, AZ, CA, NM, ID, UT, MT, NV, OR, WA, CO, TX, OK, NC, FL ) resulted in thousands of wildfires; national acreage burned exceeding 5.2 million acres (mainly in the west) and over 1,000 homes and structures destroyed in California fires alone. Over $2.0 (2.1) billion in damages/costs; 16 deaths. Special Report

Midwest Flood June 2008. Heavy rain and flooding caused significant agricultural loss and property damage in IA, IL, IN, MO, MN, NE, and WI with IA being hardest hit with widespread rainfall totals ranging from 4 to over 16 inches. Estimate of over $15.0 (15.8) billion in damages/costs; 24 deaths. Special Report Additional information

Midwest/Mid-Atlantic Severe Weather/Tornadoes June 2008. An outbreak of tornadoes and thunderstorms over the Midwest/Mid-Atlantic states (IA, IL, IN, KS, NE, MI, MN, MO, OK, WI, MD, VA, WV). Over $1.1 (1.2) billion in damages/costs; 18 deaths.Special Report

Midwest/Ohio Valley Severe Weather/Tornadoes May 2008. Outbreak of tornadoes over the Midwest/Ohio Valley regions (IL, IN, IA, KS, MN, NE, OK, WY, CO) with 235 tornadoes confirmed. Over $2.4 (2.5) billion in damages/costs; 13 deaths. Special Report

Southeast/Midwest Tornadoes February 2008. Series of tornadoes and severe thunderstorms across the Southeast and Midwest states (AL, AR, IN, KY, MS, OH, TN, TX) with 87 tornadoes confirmed. Over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damages/costs; 57 deaths. Special Report

---- 2007 ----

Great Plains and Eastern Drought Entire year 2007. Severe drought with periods of extreme heat over most of the southeast and portions of the Great Plains, Ohio Valley, and Great Lakes area, resulting in major reductions in crop yields, along with very low stream-flows and lake levels. Includes states of ND, SD, NE, KS, OK, TX, MN, WI, IA, MO, AR, LA, MS, AL, GA, NC, SC, FL, TN, VA, WV, KY, IN, IL, OH, MI, PA, NY. Preliminary estimate of well over $5.0 (5.5) billion in damage/costs; some deaths reported due to heat but not beyond typical annual averages. Special Report

Western Wildfires Summer-Fall 2007. Continued drought conditions and high winds over much of the western US (AK, AZ, CA, ID, UT, MT, NV, OR, WA) resulting in numerous wildfires; with national acreage burned exceeding 8.9 million acres (mainly in the west) and over 3,000 homes and structures destroyed in southern California alone. Well over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damages/costs; at least 12 deaths. Special Report

Spring Freeze April 2007. Widespread severe freeze over much of the east and midwest (AL, AR, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, MS, MO, NE, NC, OH, OK, SC, TN, VA, WV), causing significant losses in fruit crops, field crops (especially wheat), and the ornamental industry. Temperatures in the teens/20's accompanied by rather high winds nullified typical crop-protection systems. Over $2.0 (2.2) billion in damage/costs; no deaths reported. Special Report

East/South Severe Weather April 2007. Flooding, hail, tornadoes, and severe thunderstorms across numerous states (CT, DE, GA, LA, ME, MD, MA, MS, NH, NJ, NY, NC, PA, RI, SC, TX, VT, VA) in mid-April, including 3 "killer" tornadoes. Over $1.5 (1.6) billion in damages/costs; 9 deaths. Special Report

California Freeze January 2007. Widespread agricultural freeze - for nearly two weeks in January, overnight temperatures over a good portion of California dipped into the 20's, destroying numerous agricultural crops; with citrus, berry, and vegetable crops most affected. $1.4 (1.5) billion estimated in damage/costs; 1 fatality reported. Special Report

---- 2006 ----

Numerous Wildfires Entire year 2006. Numerous wildfires mainly over the western half of the country due to dry weather and high winds, burning nearly 10 million acres (new record for period since 1960), with the most affected states being AK, AZ, CA, CO, FL, ID, MT, NM, NV, OK, OR, TX, WA, WY. Well over $1.0 (1.1) billion in overall damages/costs; at least 28 fatalities, including 20 firefighters. Special Reports

Widespread Drought Spring-Summer 2006. Rather severe drought affected crops especially during the spring-summer, centered over the Great Plains region with other areas affected across portions of the south and far west- including states of ND, SD, NE, KS, OK, TX, MN, IA, MO, AR, LA, MS, AL, GA, FL, MT, WY, CO, NM, CA. Estimate of over $6.0 (6.7) billion damages/costs; some heat-related deaths but not beyond typical annual averages. Special Report

Northeast Flooding June 2006. Severe flooding over portions of the northeast due to several weeks of heavy rainfall, affecting the states of NY, PA, DE, MD, NJ, and VA. Over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damage/costs; at least 20 deaths reported. Special Report

Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes April 2006. Severe weather and numerous tornadoes affecting the states of OK, KS, MO, NE, KY, OH, TN, IN, MS, GA, and AL on April 6-8 with 3 "killer" tornadoes in TN. Over $1.5 (1.7) billion in damages/costs; 10 deaths. Special Report

Midwest/Ohio Valley Tornadoes April 2006. Significant outbreak of tornadoes and severe weather affecting the states of IL, IN, IA, AR, MO, KY, and TN on April 2nd with 5 "killer" tornadoes. Approximately $1.1 (1.2) billion in damages/costs; 27 deaths. Special Report

Severe Storms and Tornadoes March 2006. Outbreak of tornadoes over portions of the midwest and south during a week-long period-affecting the states of AL, AR, KY, MS, TN, TX, IN, KS, MO, and OK. Over $1.0 (1.1) billion in damage/costs; at least 10 deaths. Special Reports

---- 2005 ----

Hurricane Wilma October 2005. Category 3 hurricane hits SW Florida resulting in strong damaging winds and major flooding across southeastern Florida. Prior to landfall, Wilma as a Category 5 recorded the lowest pressure (882 mb) ever recorded in the Atlantic basin. Estimate of approximately $16.0 (18.6) billion in damages/costs; estimated 35 deaths. GLIDE number TC-2005-000178-BHS and TC-2005-000178-MEX. Special Report

Hurricane Rita September 2005. Category 3 hurricane hits Texas-Louisiana border coastal region, creating significant storm surge and wind damage along the coast, and some inland flooding in the FL panhandle, AL, MS, LA, AR, and TX. Prior to landfall, Rita reached the third lowest pressure (897 mb) ever recorded in the Atlantic basin. Estimate of approximately $16.0 (18.6) billion in damage/costs; 119 deaths reported-most being indirect (many related to evacuations). GLIDE number TC-2005-000163-CUB. Special Report

Hurricane Katrina August 2005. Category 3 hurricane initially impacts the U.S. as a Category 1 near Miami, FL, then as a strong Category 3 along the eastern LA-western MS coastlines, resulting in severe storm surge damage (maximum surge probably exceeded 30 feet) along the LA-MS-AL coasts, wind damage, and the failure of parts of the levee system in New Orleans. Inland effects included high winds and some flooding in the states of AL, MS, FL, TN, KY, IN, OH, and GA. Estimate of approximately $125 (145.0) billion in damage/costs, making this the most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history; approximately 1833 deaths-the highest U.S. total since the 1928 major hurricane in southern Florida. GLIDE number TC-2005-000144-USA. 5 MB File - Special Report

Hurricane Dennis July 2005. Category 3 hurricane makes landfall in western Florida panhandle resulting in storm surge and wind damage along the FL-AL coasts, along with scattered wind and flood damage in GA, MS, and TN. Estimate of over $2.0 (2.3) billion in damage/costs; at least 15 deaths. GLIDE number TC-2005-000112-JAM. Special Report

Midwest Drought Spring-Summer 2005. Rather severe localized drought causes significant crop losses (especially for corn and soybeans) in the states of AR, IL, IN, MO, OH, and WI. Estimate of over $1.0 (1.2) billion in damage/costs; no reported deaths. Special Report

 

---- 2004 ----

Hurricane Jeanne September 2004. Category 3 hurricane makes landfall in east-central Florida, causing considerable wind, storm surge, and flooding damage in FL, with some flood damage also in the states of GA, SC, NC, VA, MD, DE, NJ, PA, and NY. Puerto Rico also affected. Estimate of over $7.0 (8.3) billion in damage/costs; at least 28 deaths. GLIDE number TC-2004-000098-BHS and TC-2004-000098-HTI. Special Report

Hurricane Ivan September 2004. Category 3 hurricane makes landfall on Gulf coast of Alabama, with significant wind, storm surge, and flooding damage in coastal AL and FL panhandle, along with wind/flood damage in the states of GA, MS, LA, SC, NC, VA, WV, MD, TN, KY, OH, DE, NJ, PA, and NY. Estimate of over $14.0 (16.7) billion in damage/costs; at least 57 deaths. GLIDE number TC-2004-000089-USA and TC-2004-000089-BRB.Special Report

Hurricane Frances September 2004. Category 2 hurricane makes landfall in east-central Florida, causing significant wind, storm surge, and flooding damage in FL, along with considerable flood damage in the states of GA, SC, NC, and NY due to 5-15 inch rains. Estimate of over $9.0 (10.7) billion in damage/costs; at least 48 deaths. Special Report

Hurricane Charley August 2004. Category 4 hurricane makes landfall in southwest Florida, resulting in major wind and some storm surge damage in FL, along with some damage in the states of SC and NC. Estimate of over $15.0 (17.9) billion in damage/costs; at least 35 deaths. GLIDE number TC-2004-000073-USA and TC-2004-000073-JAM.Special Report

 

---- 2003 ----

Southern California Wildfires Late October-early November 2003. Dry weather, high winds, and resulting wildfires in Southern California. More than 743,000 acres of brush and timber burned, over 3,700 homes destroyed; over $2.5 (3.1) billion in damage/costs; 22 deaths. October Special Report and November Special Report

Hurricane Isabel September 2003. Category 2 hurricane makes landfall in eastern North Carolina, causing considerable storm surge damage along the coasts of NC, VA, and MD, with wind damage and some flooding due to 4-12 inch rains in NC, VA, MD, DE, WV, NJ, NY, and PA; approximately $5.0 (6.2) billion in damage/costs; 55 deaths. Special Report

Severe Storms and Tornadoes Early May 2003. Numerous tornadoes over the midwest, MS valley, OH/TN valleys and portions of the southeast, with a modern record one-week total of approximately 400 tornadoes reported; over $3.4 billion in damages/costs; 51 deaths. Special Report

Storms and Hail Early April 2003. Severe storms and large hail over the southern plains and lower MS valley, with Texas hardest hit, and much of the monetary losses due to hail; over $ 1.6 billion in damages/costs: 3 deaths. Special Report

---- 2002 ----

Widespread Drought Spring through early Fall 2002. Moderate to Extreme drought over large portions of 30 states, including the western states, the Great Plains, and much of the eastern U.S.; estimate of over $10.0 (12.5) billion in damages/costs; no deaths. Special Report

Mud cracks in dry creek bed- summer 2002

Western Fire Season Spring through Fall 2002. Major fires over 11 western states from the Rockies to the west coast, due to drought and periodic high winds, with over 7.1 million acres burned; over $ 2.0 (2.5) billion in damages/costs; 21 deaths. Special Report
Central/Eastern Severe Weather/Tornadoes Late April - Early May 2002. Numerous tornadoes over the Central and Eastern states (NC, GA, VA, TX, AR, MO, MS, TN, IL, IN, KY, PA, MD, NY, OH, WV, KS). Over $1.7 (2.1) billion in damages/costs; 7 deaths.

---- 2001 ----

Tropical Storm Allison June 2001. The persistent remnants of Tropical Storm Allison produces rainfall amounts of 30-40 inches in portions of coastal Texas and Louisiana, causing severe flooding especially in the Houston area, then moves slowly northeastward; fatalities and significant damage reported in TX, LA, MS, FL, VA, and PA; estimate of approximately $5.0 (6.4) billion in damage/costs; at least 43 deaths. Special Report

Midwest and Ohio Valley Hail and Tornadoes April 2001. Storms, tornadoes, and hail in the states of TX, OK, KS, NE, IA, MO, IL, IN, WI, MI, OH, KY, WV, and PA, over a 6-day period; over $1.9 (2.4) billion in damage/costs, with the most significant losses due to hail; at least 3 deaths. 

---- 2000 ----

Drought/Heat Wave Spring-Summer 2000. Severe drought and persistent heat over south-central and southeastern states causing significant losses to agriculture and related industries; estimate of over $4.0 (5.2) billion in damage/costs; estimated 140 deaths nationwide. Special Report

Western Fire Season Spring-Summer 2000. Severe fire season in western states due to drought and frequent winds, with nearly 7 million acres burned; estimate of over $2.0 (2.6) billion in damage/costs (includes fire suppression); no deaths reported. Special Report

---- 1999 ----

Hurricane Floyd September 1999. Large category 2 hurricane makes landfall in eastern NC, causing 10-20 inch rains in 2 days, with severe flooding in NC and some flooding in SC, VA, MD, PA, NY, NJ, DE, RI, CT, MA, NH, and VT; estimate of at least $6.0 (8.1) billion damage/costs; 77 deaths. Special Report

Eastern Drought/Heat Wave Summer 1999. Very dry summer and high temperatures, mainly in eastern U.S., with extensive agricultural losses; over $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; estimated 502 deaths. Special Report

 

Oklahoma-Kansas Tornadoes May 1999. Outbreak of F4-F5 tornadoes hit the states of Oklahoma and Kansas, along with Texas and Tennessee, Oklahoma City area hardest hit; over $1.6 (2.2) billion damage/costs; 55 deaths. Special Report

Arkansas-Tennessee Tornadoes January 1999. Two outbreaks of tornadoes in 6-day period strike Arkansas and Tennessee; approximately $1.3 (1.8) billion damage/costs; 17 deaths. Special Report

---- 1998 ----

California Freeze December 1998. A severe freeze damaged fruit and vegetable crops in the Central and Southern San Joaquin Valley. Extended intervals of sub 27 degree F temperatures occurred over an 8-day period. $2.5 (3.5) billion estimated damages/costs.

Texas Flooding October-November 1998. Severe flooding in southeast Texas from 2 heavy rain events, with 10-20 inch rainfall totals; approximately $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; 31 deaths.

Hurricane Georges September 1998. Category 2 hurricane strikes Puerto Rico, Florida Keys, and Gulf coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida panhandle, 15-30 inch 2-day rain totals in parts of AL/FL; estimated $5.9 (8.1) billion damage/costs; 16 deaths.Special Report

Hurricane Bonnie August 1998. Category 3 hurricane strikes eastern North Carolina and Virginia, extensive agricultural damage due to winds and flooding, with 10-inch rains in 2 days in some locations; approximately $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; 3 deaths. Special Report

Southern Drought/Heat Wave Summer 1998. Severe drought and heat wave from Texas/Oklahoma eastward to the Carolinas; $6.0-$9.0 billion (8.3-12.4) damage/costs to agriculture and ranching; at least 200 deaths. Special Report

Minnesota Severe Storms/Hail May 1998. Very damaging severe thunderstorms with large hail over wide areas of Minnesota; over $1.5 (2.1) billion damage/costs; 1 death.

Southeast Severe Weather Winter-Spring 1998. Tornadoes and flooding related to El Nino in southeastern states; over $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; at least 132 deaths.Special Report

Northeast Ice Storm January 1998. Intense ice storm hits Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York, with extensive forestry losses; over $1.4 (1.9) billion damage/costs; 16 deaths. Special Report

---- 1997 ----

Northern Plains Flooding April-May 1997. Severe flooding in Dakotas and Minnesota due to heavy spring snowmelt; approximately $3.7 (5.2) billion damage/costs; 11 deaths.Special Report

MS and OH Valleys Flooding and Tornadoes March 1997. Tornadoes and severe flooding hit the states of AR, MO, MS, TN, IL, IN, KY, OH, and WV, with over 10 inches in 24 hours in Louisville; estimated $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; 67 deaths. Special Report

West Coast Flooding December 1996-January 1997. Torrential rains (10-40 inches in 2 weeks) and snowmelt produce severe flooding over portions of California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, and Montana; approximately $3.0 (4.2) billion damage/costs; 36 deaths. Special Report

---- 1996 ----

Hurricane Fran September 1996. Category 3 hurricane strikes North Carolina and Virginia, over 10-inch 24-hour rains in some locations and extensive agricultural and other losses; over $5.0 (7.2) billion in damage/costs; 37 deaths. Special Report

Satellite image of Hurricane Fran

Southern Plains Severe Drought Fall 1995 through Summer 1996. Severe drought in agricultural regions of southern plains--Texas and Oklahoma most severely affected; approximately $5.0 (7.2) billion damage/costs; no deaths.

Pacific Northwest Severe Flooding February 1996. Very heavy, persistent rains (10-30 inches) and melting snow over Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and western Montana; approximately $1.0 (1.4) billion damage/costs; 9 deaths. Special Report

Blizzard of '96 Followed by Flooding January 1996. Very heavy snowstorm (1-4 feet) over Appalachians, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast; followed by severe flooding in parts of same area due to rain and snowmelt; approximately $3.0 (4.3) billion damage/costs; 187 deaths. Special Report

---- 1995 ----

Hurricane Opal October 1995. Category 3 hurricane strikes Florida panhandle, Alabama, western Georgia, eastern Tennessee, and the western Carolinas, causing storm surge, wind, and flooding damage; over $3.0 (4.4) billion damage/costs; 27 deaths. Special Report

Satellite image of Hurricane Opal

Hurricane Marilyn September 1995. Category 2 hurricane devastates U.S. Virgin Islands; estimated $2.1 (2.9) billion damage/costs; 13 deaths.

Texas/Oklahoma/Louisiana/Mississippi Severe Weather and Flooding May 1995. Torrential rains, hail, and tornadoes across Texas - Oklahoma and southeast Louisiana - southern Mississippi, with Dallas and New Orleans areas (10-25 inches in 5 days) hardest hit; $5.0-$6.0 (7.4-8.9) billion damage/costs; 32 deaths.

California Flooding January-March 1995. Frequent winter storms cause 20-70 inches rainfall and periodic flooding across much of California; over $3.0 (4.4) billion damage/costs; 27 deaths. Special Report

---- 1994 ----

Western Fire Season Summer-Fall 1994. Severe fire season in western states due to dry weather; approximately $1.0 (1.5) billion damage/costs; death toll undetermined.

Texas Flooding October 1994. Torrential rain (10-25 inches in 5 days) and thunderstorms cause flooding across much of southeast Texas; approximately $1.0 (1.5) billion damage/costs; 19 deaths.

Tropical Storm Alberto July 1994. Remnants of slow-moving Alberto brought torrential 10-25 inch rains in 3 days, widespread flooding, and agricultural damage in parts of Georgia, Alabama, and panhandle of Florida; approximately $1.0 (1.5) billion damage/costs; 32 deaths. Special Report

Southeast Ice Storm February 1994. Intense ice storm with extensive damage in portions of TX, OK, AR, LA, MS, AL, TN, GA, SC, NC, and VA; approximately $3.0 (4.6) billion damage/costs; 9 deaths. Special Report and Special Report #2

 

And here they are getting fewer still

---- 1993 ----

California Wildfires Fall 1993. Dry weather, high winds, and wildfires in southern California; approximately $1.0 (1.6) billion damage/costs; 4 deaths.

Midwest Flooding Summer 1993. Severe, widespread flooding in central U.S. due to persistent heavy rains and thunderstorms; approximately $21.0 (32.8) billion damage/costs; 48 deaths. Special Report and Special Report #2

Drought/Heat Wave Summer 1993. Southeastern U.S.; about $1.0 (1.6) billion damage/costs to agriculture; at least 16 deaths. Special Report and Special Report #2

Storm/Blizzard March 1993. "Storm of the Century" hits entire eastern seaboard with tornadoes, high winds, and heavy snows (2-4 feet); $5.0-$6.0 (7.8-9.4) billion damage/costs; approximately 270 deaths. Special Report and Special Report #2

---- 1992 ----

Nor'easter of 1992 December 1992. Slow-moving storm batters northeast U.S. coast, New England hardest hit; $1.0-$2.0 (1.6-3.2) billion damage/costs; 19 deaths.

Hurricane Iniki September 1992. Category 4 hurricane hits Hawaiian island of Kauai; about $1.8 (2.9) billion damage/costs; 7 deaths.

Hurricane Andrew August 1992. Category 5 hurricane hits Florida and Louisiana, high winds damage or destroy over 125,000 homes; approximately $27.0 (43.5) billion damage/costs; 61 deaths. Special Report

Satellite image of Hurricane Andrew

---- 1991 ----

Oakland Firestorm October 1991. Oakland, California firestorm due to low humidities and high winds; approximately $2.5 (4.2) billion damage/costs; 25 deaths.

Hurricane Bob August 1991. Category 2 hurricane--Mainly coastal North Carolina, Long Island, and New England; $1.5 (2.5) billion damage/costs; 18 deaths.

---- 1990 ----

California Freeze December 1990. Severe freeze in the Central and Southern San Joaquin Valley caused the loss of citrus, avocado trees, and other crops in many areas. Several days of subfreezing temperatures occurred, with some valley locations in the teens. $3.4 (5.9) billion in direct and indirect economic losses, including damage to public buildings, utilities, crops, and residences.

Texas/Oklahoma/Louisiana/Arkansas Flooding May 1990. Torrential rains cause flooding along the Trinity, Red, and Arkansas Rivers in TX, OK, LA, and AR; over $1.0 (1.7) billion damage/costs; 13 deaths.

---- 1989 ----

Hurricane Hugo September 1989. Category 4 hurricane devastates South and North Carolina with ~ 20-foot storm surge and severe wind damage after hitting Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; over $9.0 (16.4) billion damage/costs (about $7.1 (12.9) billion in Carolinas); 86 deaths (57--U.S. mainland, 29--U.S. Islands).

Northern Plains Drought Summer 1989. Severe summer drought over much of the northern plains with significant losses to agriculture; at least $1.0 (1.8) billion in damage/costs; no deaths reported.

---- 1988 ----

Drought/Heat Wave Summer 1988. 1988 drought in central and eastern U.S. with very severe losses to agriculture and related industries; estimated $40.0 (76.4) billion damage/costs; estimated 5,000 to 10,000 deaths (includes heat stress-related).

---- 1986 ----

Southeast Drought/Heat Wave Summer 1986. Severe summer drought in parts of the southeastern U.S. with severe losses to agriculture; $1.0-$1.5 (2.1-3.1) billion in damage/costs; estimated 100 deaths.

---- 1985 ----

Hurricane Juan October-November 1985. Category 1 hurricane--Louisiana and Southeast U.S.--severe flooding; $1.5 (3.2) billion damage/costs; 63 deaths.

Hurricane Elena August-September 1985. Category 3 hurricane--Florida to Louisiana; $1.3 (2.7) billion damage/costs; 4 deaths.

Florida Freeze January 1985. Severe freeze central/northern Florida; about $1.2 (2.5) billion damage to citrus industry; no deaths.

---- 1983 ----

Florida Freeze December 1983. Severe freeze central/northern Florida; about $2.0 (4.5) billion damage to citrus industry; no deaths.

Hurricane Alicia August 1983. Category 3 hurricane--Texas; $3.0 (6.8) billion damage/costs; 21 deaths.

Western Storms and Flooding 1982 - Early 1983. Storms and flooding related to El Nino, especially in the states of WA, OR, CA, AZ, NV, ID, UT, and MT; approximately $1.1 (2.5) billion in damage/costs; at least 45 deaths.

Gulf States Storms and Flooding 1982 - Early 1983. Storms and flooding related to El Nino, especially in the states of TX, AR, LA, MS, AL, GA, and FL; approximately $1.1 (2.5) billion in damage/costs; at least 50 deaths.

---- 1980 ----

Drought/Heat WaveJune-September 1980. Central and eastern U.S.; estimated $20.0 (54.8) billion damage/costs to agriculture and related industries; estimated 10,000 deaths (includes heat stress-related).


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