Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hurricane Andrew Anniversary


The 1992 storm that grew to major hurricane status would go down in history as one of the most devastating and costliest natural disasters in U.S. history.

It's name was Andrew.

The storm began as a weak tropical wave emerging from the west coast of Africa on August 14, 1992. Ten days later, the storm made landfall on the southeast Florida coast as a Category 5 monster.

"Category 5" describes hurricane with sustained winds of at least 155 mph. The storm made landfall at Elliott Key, FL, just south of Miami with 165 mph winds.

The storm maintained major hurricane status as it destroyed Homestead, FL, a community about 25 minutes inland from the coastline. The storm was directly and indirectly responsible for 40 deaths.

It sits today as the second-costliest U.S. natural disaster behind Hurricane Katrina. It is the 4th most intense hurricane to strike the U.S.



Chimp said...

I was in Jacksonville, Florida when Andrew hit. Originally, it was coming towards the Jacksonville area.

jadedj said...

I was in south Dade...Cutler Ridge...due east of Elliot Key.

We went up to my brother's in Jupiter the night before it hit. We couldn't get back for two days. When we did, I couldn't recognize my neighborhood...no major points of reference...no lights, stop signs, street signs.

We lived on a canal, and were concerned that the house had flooded...but it didn't. The roof was ripped up in places, and several storm shutters didn't hold and the windows blew out. A Banyan tree out back just missed the house when it toppled. Down the street several houses, just vanished...flattened. We had rooms in which no damage occurred, and rooms that were totally destroyed. We were without electricity and phone for 2 months. There were piles of debris one story high everywhere...for six months, at least.

The neighbors who had stayed and rode it out, to a person said, never again. However, it did produce an incredible solidarity in the neighborhood...everyone pitching in to help one another, from climbing on roofs and patching to sharing food and generators. I've never seen anything like it in this county before, or since.

Chimp said...

Very interesting. I had a friend living in Miami Beach at the time but they went to Orlando. It didn't do much in Miami except to the south. I remember seeing Homestead the day after and it was totally flattened. Like you said, no landmarks, no nothing. Just a bunch of "twigs".

Sunny said...

GREAT personal story of surviving that monster Andrew, JJ ~ I had just moved from Miami Beach and was safely tucked away in my hometown (village) when Andrew blew in.

I sent food and supplies to my friends that lived in the building across from the boardwalk on Collins Ave.