July 21st, 2014

Atlantic Hurricane Season: What We Know Can Happen — Historical Impacts: Hurricane Betsy

Posted at 1:00 AM ET

Hurricane Betsy made landfall on Key Largo, Florida, in 1965 with estimated winds of 125 mph — a Category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale — before entering the Gulf of Mexico.

Betsy made a second landfall near Grand Isle, Louisiana, with estimated winds of 155 mph, a Category 4 hurricane.

Severe Weather Print

Storm surge measured eight feet at Big Pine Key, Florida, also with severe beach erosion along the Southwest Florida coast. Near Grand Isle, Louisiana, the storm surge measured about 16 feet.

The hurricane caused estimated economic losses of USD18.7 billion in 2010 dollars, correcting for wealth and inflation (1).

This was a very quiet season under a strong El Niño year, with only four hurricanes in the Atlantic basin, one of which made U.S. landfall.

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1. Blake, E.S., Landsea, C.W. and Gibney, E.J., 2011: The Deadliest, Costliest, and Most Intense United States Tropical Cyclones From 1851 to 2010. National Weather Service. NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS NHC-6.

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