Seven years ago today, I was blogging about how Hurricane Katrina's track had switched west on the models to center on New Orleans. With the models shifting soon-to-be-Hurricane Isaac's track to center over New Orleans last night, the new levees protecting NOLA were completed just in the nick of time, it would seem.
And it only took $14,500,000,000 to fix the levees. Unfortunately, the 133-mile line of defense only protects against a "100-year flood." Katrina was a "500-year" flood and there are already reports surfacing of corner-cutting to the new levee construction, which would reduce that further.
The effect of the Gulf Oil Spill is another wildcard. I blogged in 2010 about how only 2.7 miles of wetlands reduces a hurricane's storm surge by 1 foot. If there's anything "fortunate" about Isaac's expected track, it's that the wind should be off the land in the southern marshes of the state (assuming the storm comes through or east of NOLA).
The map above from ERMA shows the heaviest beach oiling from the spill. Note that the worst was on the barrier islands of southern Mississippi and Alabama, but most of that has been cleaned up now and I would assume didn't cause permanent (hurricane-relevant) damage, in non-wetland areas. There is a whole report on this topic if you're interested in reading it.
Let's hope the models are wrong.
The four-day barrage of storms hitting the Pacific Northwest did a lot of damage. But if you believe AccuWeather.com readers, it never happened. I delve into why.
The USGS has released hundreds of thousands of aerial photos taken after Hurricane Matthew from Florida to the Carolinas- here are examples and instructions.
I said last night on Twitter: "Bermuda, I hope you're ready for Hurricane Nicole." What was a Cat 2 is now a Cat 4!
Hurricane Matthew is no more as of Sunday afternoon, but the flooding from the storm will continue as rivers rise. Here's a summary of the "greatest hits" from the storm:
Hurricane Matthew is making his closest approach to the Florida Coast this morning and there is hyperbole on both ends of the media scale.
Hurricane Matthew has been upgraded to a Category 4 storm and is on its way to an unprecedented bounce up the southeast U.S. coast.