Hurricane Beulah

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Hurricane Beulah
Category 5 major hurricane (SSHWS/NWS)
Hurricane Beulah in the Gulf of Mexico as a Category 5 on September 19
Formed September 5, 1967
Dissipated September 22, 1967
Highest winds 1-minute sustained:160 mph (260 km/h)
Lowest pressure 923 mbar (hPa); 27.26 inHg
Fatalities 59 direct
Damage $234.6 million (1967 USD)
Areas affected Greater Antilles, Yucatán Peninsula, Northeast Mexico, South Texas
Part of the 1967 Atlantic hurricane season

Hurricane Beulah was the second tropical storm, second hurricane, and only major hurricane during the 1967 Atlantic hurricane season. It tracked through the Caribbean, struck the Yucatán peninsula of Mexico as a major hurricane, and moved west-northwest into the Gulf of Mexico, briefly gaining Category 5 intensity. It was the strongest hurricane during the 1967 Atlantic hurricane season. The hurricane made landfall just north of the mouth of the Rio Grande River as a Category 3. It spawned 115 tornadoes across Texas, which established a new record for the highest amount of tornadoes produced by a tropical cyclone. Due to its slow movement over Texas, Beulah led to significant flooding. Throughout its path, at least 59 people were killed and total damage reached $234.6 million (1967 USD), of which $200 million occurred in the United States, $26.9 million occurred in Mexico, and $7.65 million occurred in the eastern Caribbean Sea.

1967 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1967 Atlantic hurricane season was a significantly inactive season, however, it featured an exceptionally high number of depressions, a near record. It was the first Atlantic hurricane season to be included in the satellite era. The first depression originated on June 10, and the final storm – Heidi – lost tropical characteristics on October 31. Hurricane Beulah – the strongest storm of the season – was also the most damaging, causing 59 deaths and $235 million in damage (1967 USD) along its 16-day path. Beulah formed on September 5 and soon after crossed southern Martinique into the Caribbean Sea. On the island, it dropped 18.7 in (475 mm) of rainfall in Les Anses-d'Arlet, causing severe flooding. Widespread evacuations occurred along the southern coast of the Dominican Republic due to fears of a repeat of Hurricane Inez from the previous year. After brushing the south coast of Hispaniola, the hurricane weakened and re-intensified, striking the Yucatán Peninsula and later near the United States/Mexico border. There, it caused severe river flooding, killing 34 people in the two countries.

Tropical cyclones are unofficially ranked on one of five tropical cyclone intensity scales, according to their maximum sustained winds and which tropical cyclone basin(s) they are located in. Only a few scales of classifications are used officially by the meteorological agencies monitoring the tropical cyclones, but some alternative scales also exist, such as accumulated cyclone energy, the Power Dissipation Index, the Integrated Kinetic Energy Index, and the Hurricane Severity Index.

Atlantic hurricane season tropical cyclone season

The Atlantic hurricane season is the period in a year when hurricanes usually form in the Atlantic Ocean. Tropical cyclones in the North Atlantic are called hurricanes, tropical storms, or tropical depressions. In addition, there have been several storms over the years that have not been fully tropical and are categorized as subtropical depressions and subtropical storms. Even though subtropical storms and subtropical depressions are not technically as strong as tropical cyclones, the damages can still be devastating.


Meteorological history

Map plotting the track and the intensity of the storm, according to the Saffir-Simpson scale Beulah 1967 track.png
Map plotting the track and the intensity of the storm, according to the Saffir–Simpson scale

On August 22, 1967, an ESSA-5 satellite image depicted an area of enhanced convection—shower and thunderstorm activity—east of the Western High Plateau in Cameroon over central Africa. Reaching the western slopes of the mountains two days later, the tropical wave became more coherent with clouds condensing along its axis. As it moved over west Africa, cyclonic rotation became apparent about 2,000 ft (610 m) above the surface. A research paper published in 1969 refers to the disturbance as a depression as it neared the west coast of Africa; [1] however, this significantly differs from the official Atlantic hurricane database which does not mention the system at that time, [2] as a surface circulation likely did not exist. Regardless, the system emerged over the Atlantic Ocean around 12°N on August 28, as represented by barometric pressure falls in Dakar, Senegal. [1] Once over water, the system interacted with the Intertropical Convergence Zone and continued westward along an undulating path with no further organization. It was not until a United States Navy weather reconnaissance plane flew into the disturbance on September 4, while it was located east of the Lesser Antilles, that signs of development were apparent. Corresponding observations from ships in the region on September 5 confirmed the existence of a 1010  mbar (hPa; 28.23  inHg) low-pressure area. [3] In light of this, the disturbance was classified as a tropical depression at 12:00  UTC that day, with its center situated roughly 175 mi (285 km) east-northeast of Barbados. [2]

Television Infrared Observation Satellite

TIROS, or Television Infrared Observation Satellite, is a series of early weather satellites launched by the United States, beginning with TIROS-1 in 1960. TIROS was the first satellite that was capable of remote sensing of the Earth, enabling scientists to view the Earth from a new perspective: space. The program, promoted by Harry Wexler, proved the usefulness of satellite weather observation, at a time when military reconnaissance satellites were secretly in development or use. TIROS demonstrated at that time that "the key to genius is often simplicity." TIROS is an acronym of "Television InfraRed Observation Satellite" and is also the plural of "tiro" which means "a young soldier, a beginner".

Atmospheric convection

Atmospheric convection is the result of a parcel-environment instability, or temperature difference layer in the atmosphere. Different lapse rates within dry and moist air masses lead to instability. Mixing of air during the day which expands the height of the planetary boundary layer leads to increased winds, cumulus cloud development, and decreased surface dew points. Moist convection leads to thunderstorm development, which is often responsible for severe weather throughout the world. Special threats from thunderstorms include hail, downbursts, and tornadoes.

Western High Plateau

The Western High Plateau, Western Highlands or Bamenda Grassfields is a region of Cameroon characterised by high relief, cool temperatures, heavy rainfall and savanna vegetation. The region lies along the Cameroon line and consists of mountain ranges and volcanoes made of crystalline and igneous rock. The region borders the South Cameroon Plateau to the southeast, the Adamawa Plateau to the northeast and the Cameroon coastal plain to the south.

A slow-moving system, the depression steadily organized as it approached the Lesser Antilles. Observations from aircraft reconnaissance indicated that the system attained gale-force winds by 12:00 UTC on September 7, resulting in its upgrade to a tropical storm. It was also assigned the name Beulah, making it the second named storm of the 1967 season. Shortly after being named, Beulah clipped the southern coast of Martinique and entered the eastern Caribbean Sea. Feeding off the warm waters of the Caribbean, the cyclone quickly strengthened and reached hurricane intensity by 18:00 UTC on September 8. Rapid deepening ensued thereafter with the storm's central pressure falling to 940 mbar (hPa; 27.75 inHg) the following day as it passed 100 mi (160 km) south of Puerto Rico. [3] At this time winds were estimated to be at least 140 mph (225 km/h), ranking Beulah as a Category 4 on the Saffir–Simpson hurricane scale. [2] Upon reaching this strength, weather radar imagery from San Juan, Puerto Rico showed that Beulah featured a 15 mi (24 km) wide eye surrounded by an intense eyewall about 8 mi (13 km) thick. [4]

Tropical cyclones and subtropical cyclones are named by various warning centers to provide ease of communication between forecasters and the general public regarding forecasts, watches, and warnings. The names are intended to reduce confusion in the event of concurrent storms in the same basin. Generally once storms produce sustained wind speeds of more than 33 knots, names are assigned in order from predetermined lists depending on which basin they originate. However, standards vary from basin to basin: some tropical depressions are named in the Western Pacific, while tropical cyclones must have a significant amount of gale-force winds occurring around the centre before they are named in the Southern Hemisphere.

Martinique Overseas region and department in France

Martinique is an insular region of France located in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies in the eastern Caribbean Sea, with a land area of 1,128 square kilometres (436 sq mi) and a population of 376,480 inhabitants as of January 2016. Like Guadeloupe, it is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department. One of the Windward Islands, it is directly north of Saint Lucia, southeast of Greater Antilles, northwest of Barbados, and south of Dominica.

Caribbean Sea A sea of the Atlantic Ocean bounded by North, Central, and South America

The Caribbean Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean in the tropics of the Western Hemisphere. It is bounded by Mexico and Central America to the west and south west, to the north by the Greater Antilles starting with Cuba, to the east by the Lesser Antilles, and to the south by the north coast of South America.

Radar images of Hurricane Beulah from 21:30 UTC on September 9 to 03:30 UTC on September 10, depicting its eyewall replacement cycle Hurricane Beulah 1967 eyewall replacement.png
Radar images of Hurricane Beulah from 21:30 UTC on September 9 to 03:30 UTC on September 10, depicting its eyewall replacement cycle

During the evening of September 9 Beulah turned westward as weak ridge developed over the Bahamas, between it and the newly formed Tropical Storm Doria. [3] The powerful storm weakened somewhat as an eyewall replacement cycle began to take shape. During this phase, the inner-eye of Beulah contracted to roughly 3–4 mi (5–6 km) in diameter while a second eyewall spanned an area 28 mi (45 km) across. The smaller eye soon dissipated and the larger one became the single, dominant feature by the morning of September 10. The completion of this marked the first time that an eyewall replacement cycle was observed in its entirety. [4] The aforementioned westward turn placed the Dominican Republic in the line of danger, an area still reeling from the devastating effects of Hurricane Inez just one year prior. However, the storm unexpectedly collapsed as it approached the Barahona Peninsula and struck the area as a greatly weakened, though still significant, hurricane with estimated winds of 90 mph (150 km/h) around 18:00 UTC on September 11. [3] [2]

Eyewall replacement cycle

Eyewall replacement cycles, also called concentric eyewall cycles, naturally occur in intense tropical cyclones, generally with winds greater than 185 km/h (115 mph), or major hurricanes. When tropical cyclones reach this intensity, and the eyewall contracts or is already sufficiently small, some of the outer rainbands may strengthen and organize into a ring of thunderstorms—an outer eyewall—that slowly moves inward and robs the inner eyewall of its needed moisture and angular momentum. Since the strongest winds are in a cyclone's eyewall, the tropical cyclone usually weakens during this phase, as the inner wall is "choked" by the outer wall. Eventually the outer eyewall replaces the inner one completely, and the storm may re-intensify.

Dominican Republic country in the Caribbean

The Dominican Republic is a country located in the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean region. It occupies the eastern five-eighths of the island, which it shares with the nation of Haiti, making Hispaniola one of two Caribbean islands, along with Saint Martin, that are shared by two sovereign states. The Dominican Republic is the second-largest Caribbean nation by area at 48,671 square kilometers (18,792 sq mi), and third by population with approximately 10 million people, of which approximately three million live in the metropolitan area of Santo Domingo, the capital city.

Skirting the southern coast of Haiti's Tiburon Peninsula, Beulah further degraded to a tropical storm by the morning of September 12. Unseasonably strong wind shear associated with the jet stream, resulting from an upper-level trough to the north, and the cyclone's interaction with land were responsible for the dramatic degradation. By the time it had cleared Haiti, Beulah was no more than a minimal tropical storm with winds near 40 mph (65 km/h). [3] Its pressure had also risen by roughly 60 mbar (hPa; 1.77 inHg) to 1000 mbar (hPa; 29.53 inHg). [2] Originally seen as a threat to Jamaica, northeasterly flow induced a southerly component to the track and pushed the cyclone south of the island on September 13. The shear previously impeding organization abated on September 14 and a ridge re-established itself to Beulah's north, allowing the storm to resume a west-northwest to northwest track. The upper-level changes led to a favorable environment for intensification and Beulah regained hurricane strength by 12:00 UTC on September 14 while located about 425 mi (685 km) south-southeast of Havana, Cuba. [3] [2] [5]

Haiti country in the Caribbean

Haiti, officially the Republic of Haiti and formerly called Hayti, is a country located on the island of Hispaniola, east of Cuba in the Greater Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean Sea. It occupies the western three-eighths of the island, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. Haiti is 27,750 square kilometres (10,714 sq mi) in size and has an estimated 10.8 million people, making it the most populous country in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the second-most populous country in the Caribbean as a whole.

Wind shear

Wind shear, sometimes referred to as wind gradient, is a difference in wind speed or direction over a relatively short distance in the atmosphere. Atmospheric wind shear is normally described as either vertical or horizontal wind shear. Vertical wind shear is a change in wind speed or direction with change in altitude. Horizontal wind shear is a change in wind speed with change in lateral position for a given altitude.

Jet stream Fast-flowing atmospheric air-current

Jet streams are fast flowing, narrow, meandering air currents in the atmospheres of some planets, including Earth. On Earth, the main jet streams are located near the altitude of the tropopause and are westerly winds. Their paths typically have a meandering shape. Jet streams may start, stop, split into two or more parts, combine into one stream, or flow in various directions including opposite to the direction of the remainder of the jet.

A composite satellite image on September 17 depicting Hurricanes Beulah (bottom), Doria (middle), and Chloe (top). Hurricanes Beulah, Chloe, and Doria on September 17, 1967.png
A composite satellite image on September 17 depicting Hurricanes Beulah (bottom), Doria (middle), and Chloe (top).

Moving through the climatologically favorable western Caribbean, [3] Beulah quickly regained major hurricane status on September 15 with winds estimated at 115 mph (185 km/h). [2] The storm's pressure fell to 964 mb (hPa; 28.47 inHg) on September 16 before some weakening took place. Beulah ultimately made landfall on Cozumel island with winds of at least 100 mph (160 km/h) later that day and struck the mainland Yucatán Peninsula hours later. Despite moving over land, little weakening took place by the time the hurricane emerged over the Gulf of Mexico about 24 hours later. [3] The hurricane maintained its intensity throughout September 18 as it moved west-northwest to southern Tamaulipas, Mexico. [2] However, on September 19, a pronounced phase of rapid intensification took place as Beulah turned northwest to the Rio Grande Valley region. Aircraft reconnaissance throughout the day found falling pressures and ultimately measured a value of 923 mbar (hPa; 27.25 inHg) around 18:00 UTC. This was the second-lowest pressure ever recorded by aircraft at the time, behind a 920 mbar (hPa; 27.17 inHg) measurement in Hurricane Hattie of 1961. [3] Beulah was estimated to have achieved its peak intensity shortly thereafter as a Category 5 hurricane with winds estimated at 160 mph (260 km/h). [2]

Cozumel island in Quintana Roo, Mexico

Cozumel is an island and municipality in the Caribbean Sea off the eastern coast of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula, opposite Playa del Carmen, and close to the Yucatán Channel. The municipality is part of the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Yucatán Peninsula peninsula in North America

The Yucatán Peninsula, in southeastern Mexico, separates the Caribbean Sea from the Gulf of Mexico, with the northern coastline on the Yucatán Channel. The peninsula lies east of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, a northwestern geographic partition separating the region of Central America from the rest of North America. It is approximately 181,000 km2 (70,000 sq mi) in area, and is almost entirely composed of limestone.

Gulf of Mexico An Atlantic Ocean basin extending into southern North America

The Gulf of Mexico is an ocean basin and a marginal sea of the Atlantic Ocean, largely surrounded by the North American continent. It is bounded on the northeast, north and northwest by the Gulf Coast of the United States, on the southwest and south by Mexico, and on the southeast by Cuba. The U.S. states of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida border the Gulf on the north, which are often referred to as the "Third Coast", in comparison with the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

Regarded as the third-largest hurricane on record at the time, [6] Beulah moved along a slowing, erratic, and somewhat cycloidal path. Slight weakening ensued as it neared land and Beulah ultimately made its final landfall south of Brownsville, Texas near the mouth of the Rio Grande River around 13:00 UTC on September 20. No direct measurements exist at the core of the hurricane as it moved ashore; however, based on a minimum pressure of 951 mbar (hPa; 28.09 inHg) in Brownsville, the hurricane likely struck land at an intensity below that value. [3] A vessel anchored in the Port of Brownsville measured peak wind gusts of 136 mph (219 km/h), equivalent to a low-end Category 4 hurricane. [5] [6] According to the National Hurricane Center, Beulah struck as a Category 3 and had a pressure of 950 mbar (hPa; 28.05 inHg), though a conclusive estimate awaits re-evaluation as part of the Atlantic hurricane reanalysis project. [7] Once over land, the hurricane slowly weakened as it remained relatively close to the coast. Winds dropped below hurricane-force on September 21, roughly 24 hours after landfall. The system subsequently stalled near Alice, Texas before turning to the southwest. [3] After diminishing to a tropical depression late on September 22, [2] Beulah's circulation finally dissipated over the mountainous terrain of Nuevo León, Mexico. [3]


NIMBUS satellite image of Hurricane Beulah over the Eastern Caribbean on September 9 Hurricane Beulah on September 9, 1967.png
NIMBUS satellite image of Hurricane Beulah over the Eastern Caribbean on September 9


Following Beulah's rapid intensification on September 9, a hurricane watch was issued for the whole of Hispaniola on September 9, with emphasis on a threat to the southern coast. Warnings were soon raised for areas between Barahona and Cabo Engaño in the Dominican Republic. [5]

Across the Dominican Republic, an estimated 200,000 people evacuated from coastal areas. [3]

United States

Beginning on the afternoon of September 17, people were advised to remain off the beaches of Padre, Mustang, and St. Joseph Islands. Immediate evacuation of Port Aransas and Mustang, Padre, and St. Joseph Islands was advised on the morning of September 19. Most residents and others on the islands evacuated, including the personnel of Padre Island National Seashore. About 40 persons remained on the islands, including about 20 at Port Aransas. Immediate evacuation of Rockport and Live Oak and Lamar Peninsulas was advised in the evening of September 19. These areas and the towns of Ingleside and Aransas Pass were nearly completely evacuated. About 50 persons remained in Rockport. The evacuation of the University of Corpus Christi was advised on the morning of September 20, and Corpus Christi Beach and parts of Flour Bluff were also evacuated. During the storm there were 30,000 people in shelters in Nueces and San Patricio Counties, including 6,000 in Corpus Christi. [8]


Eastern Caribbean

Rainfall from Hurricane Beulah in Puerto Rico Beulah 1967 Puerto Rico rainfall.png
Rainfall from Hurricane Beulah in Puerto Rico

In the days preceding Beulah, a stationary trough over the Lesser Antilles produced several days of heavy rain and set the stage for significant flooding. [3] On September 7 Beulah brought torrential rains to the already saturated region, with reports of more than 10 in (250 mm) received by the Weather Bureau. Hardest hit were the French West Indies, especially Martinique. [9] During an 18‑hour span, 11.85 in (301 mm) fell on the island. Severe flooding claimed 15 lives on Martinique and destroyed many homes. [3] [10] Parts of Fort-de-France were inundated by 3 ft (0.91 m) of water while the Martinique International Airport saw 1 ft (0.30 m) of flooding. The banana crop sustained extensive losses. [9] [10] Across the island nearly 1,000 residents were left homeless, including 400 in Fort-de-France. [11] Damage on the island amounted to $4.5 million. [3] Supplies of fresh water were severely limited for two days following the storm. [11]

Heavy rains triggered flooding and landslides across St. Vincent, blocking numerous roads and causing some damage. Two children were killed after a boulder, dislodged by the rains, crashed into their home. [12] Damage on St. Lucia reached $3 million, mainly stemming from the banana crop which was largely ruined. [3] The periphery of the hurricane brought rainfall primarily to southwestern Puerto Rico, where a maximum of 9.76 inches (248 mm) fell at Maricao. [13] One person lost their life on the island and damage was a minimal $150,000. [3]

Owing to effective evacuations, only two people lost their lives in the Dominican Republic. The core of Beulah impacted areas devastated by Hurricane Inez a year prior, and left extensive damage in its wake. [3] Early reports indicated that more than 1,000 people were left homeless across the Barahona Peninsula. [14] Flash flooding affected the southern coasts of both the Dominican Republic and Haiti. [15]

Beulah had limited impact on Jamaica as it brushed the island as a weak tropical storm. [3] According to newspapers, gale-force winds affected the nation though there were no reports of damage. [16]


Rainfall from Hurricane Beulah across Mexico and Texas Beulah 1967 rainfall.gif
Rainfall from Hurricane Beulah across Mexico and Texas

Striking Cozumel Island and the Yucatan Peninsula on September 17 as Category 2 hurricane, Beulah caused considerable damage and killed 11 people across the region. Wind gusts up to 125 mph (205 km/h) severed communication lines, downed power lines and felled trees. [5] The Puerto Morelos lighthouse on the Riviera Maya was undermined by the storm; it was never torn down and the leaning tower remains a tourist attraction in the area. [17] In Mérida, Yucatán, winds were recorded up to 75 mph (120 km/h). Under the force of the powerful winds, several structures collapsed across the Peninsula, resulting in six fatalities. [18] Nearly every buildings on Cozumel Island sustained damage, roughly half of which lost their roofs. [19] Four people were also killed in Playa del Carmen. Along the coast, Beulah's storm surge flooded areas within 600 yd (550 m) of the coastline, washing out roads and leaving "graveyards of boats." [18] Throughout the Yucatan Peninsula, an estimated 5,000 people were left homeless and at least 30,000 were affected by the storm. [20]

Throughout Mexico, Beulah killed 19 people. [3] Economic losses across Tampico reached 500 million pesos. [21]

United States

In Texas upon landfall, an 18 feet (5.5 m) to 20 feet (6.1 m) storm surge inundated lower Padre Island. The force of the storm tide made 31 cuts completely through the barrier island. [6] Padre Island suffered significant devastation, and the island's sensitive ecosystem was altered by the storm. The highest sustained wind was reported as 136 miles per hour (219 km/h), recorded in the town of South Padre Island, across the Laguna Madre from Port Isabel. Winds as high as 109 miles per hour (175 km/h) were measured at the Brownsville National Weather Service office at landfall. Since the hurricane bent the anemometer 30 degrees from the vertical, it is possible the winds at Brownsville were underestimated. [22] Gusts of over 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) were recorded as far inland as the towns of McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, and Pharr, some 50 miles (80 km) from the gulf coast. Beulah spawned a record 115 tornadoes [23] which destroyed homes, commercial property, and inflicted serious damage on the region's agricultural industry. The tornado record from Beulah would survive until Hurricane Ivan set a new record in 2004. The Rio Grande Valley's citrus industry, based on cultivation of the famous "Ruby Red" grapefruit, was particularly hard hit.

Damage and Flooding in Brownsville, Texas from Hurricane Beulah. Wea00713.jpg
Damage and Flooding in Brownsville, Texas from Hurricane Beulah.

The lower Rio Grande Valley, the four county region that comprises deep south Texas, was inundated with torrential rains. Within a 36‑hour period it dropped over 27 inches (690 mm) of rain near Beeville, Texas. [24] Falfurrias received more rain from Beulah than it normally records during one year. Areas south of Laredo, San Antonio, and Matagorda were isolated for more than a week due to the resulting flood. [6] On September 28, President Lyndon Baines Johnson declared twenty-four counties in southern Texas a disaster area. [25]

Animal life in the region responded in various ways to survive. Ants survived the floods by congregating in spheres of living colonies and floated down streams to safety. Predaceous beetle larvae preyed on frogs and rodents. Crustaceans from the beaches migrated en masse to the protection of high ground. [26]

Hurricane Beulah caused an estimated US$200 million in damage. Sources report 15 total deaths from the storm. [3]


Across the Yucatan Peninsula, the Government of Mexico set up an air lift of food and medical supplies to isolated areas by September 18. [18]

The name Beulah was retired and will never be used for an Atlantic hurricane again; [22] it was replaced with Beth in 1971.

See also

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1940 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1940 Atlantic hurricane season was a generally average period of tropical cyclogenesis in 1940. Though the season had no official bounds, most tropical cyclone activity occurred during August and September. Throughout the year, fourteen tropical cyclones formed, of which nine reached tropical storm intensity; six were hurricanes. None of the hurricanes reached major hurricane intensity. Tropical cyclones that did not approach populated areas or shipping lanes, especially if they were relatively weak and of short duration, may have remained undetected. Because technologies such as satellite monitoring were not available until the 1960s, historical data on tropical cyclones from this period are often not reliable. As a result of a reanalysis project which analyzed the season in 2012, an additional hurricane was added to HURDAT. The year's first tropical storm formed on May 19 off the northern coast of Hispaniola. At the time, this was a rare occurrence, as only four other tropical disturbances were known to have formed prior during this period; since then, reanalysis of previous seasons has concluded that there were more than four tropical cyclones in May before 1940. The season's final system was a tropical disturbance situated in the Greater Antilles, which dissipated on November 8.

1938 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1938 Atlantic hurricane season began earlier than any Atlantic hurricane season on record lasting from January 3 through October 31. The season was generally quiet with 9 tropical cyclones and 4 becoming hurricane strength, 2 of which became major hurricane equivalent.

1922 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1922 Atlantic hurricane season ran through the summer and the first half of fall in 1922. The season was a quiet one, with only five tropical cyclones forming during the course of the season. The first was a tropical storm that passed over the Yucatán Peninsula and later made another landfall in rural northeast Mexico. The second was a hurricane, the strongest one of the season. It formed near Cape Verde and curved out into the Atlantic. It grazed the Leeward Islands and battered Bermuda, passing just offshore as a Category 3. The hurricane became extratropical soon after it passed Bermuda. The third was a tropical storm that passed over Cuba and made landfall near Pensacola, Florida. The last storm of the season was a Category 2 hurricane that made landfall near Cancún, Mexico. The hurricane weakened in the Bay of Campeche and dissipated just offshore. A fifth storm was found in reanalysis in 2009.

1912 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1912 Atlantic hurricane season featured the first recorded major hurricane – Category 3 or higher on the modern day Saffir–Simpson scale – in the month of November. There were eleven tropical cyclones, seven of which became tropical storms; four of those strengthened into hurricanes, and one reached major hurricane intensity. The season's first cyclone developed on April 4, while the final dissipated on November 21. The season's most intense and most devastating tropical cyclone was the final storm, known as the Jamaica hurricane. It produced heavy rainfall on Jamaica, leading to at least 100 fatalities and about $1.5 million (1912 USD) in damage. The storm was also blamed for five deaths in Cuba.

1909 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1909 Atlantic hurricane season was an average Atlantic hurricane season. The season produced eleven tropical cyclones, of which all eleven became tropical storms; six became hurricanes, and four of those strengthened into major hurricanes. The season's first storm developed on June 15 while the last storm transitioned into an extratropical cyclone on November 14. The most notable storm during the season formed in late August, while east of the Lesser Antilles. The hurricane devastated the Lesser Antilles, the Greater Antilles, and Mexico, leaving around 4,000 fatalities and more than $50 million (1909 USD) in damage.

1903 Atlantic hurricane season hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean

The 1903 Atlantic hurricane season featured seven hurricanes, the most in a season since 1893. The first tropical cyclone was initially observed in the western Atlantic Ocean near Puerto Rico on July 21. The tenth and final system transitioned into an extratropical cyclone well northwest of the Azores on November 25. These dates fall within the period with the most tropical cyclone activity in the Atlantic. Six of the ten tropical cyclones existed simultaneously.

1916 Texas hurricane Category 4 Atlantic hurricane in 1916

The 1916 Texas hurricane brought an extensive swath of destruction stretching from the Lesser Antilles westward to South Texas. An intense Category 4 hurricane at its peak, until 1919 the hurricane was the strongest tropical cyclone to strike anywhere in the United States since the 1886 Indianola hurricane in terms of its barometric pressure. Although the storm's greatest impacts were in Texas, considerable damage was wrought on Jamaica, with minimal impacts in the Lesser Antilles and the Yucatan Peninsula. Over its eight-day trek across the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico, the intense hurricane caused 24 deaths and accrued US$28.6 million in damage.

The 1903 Florida hurricane was an Atlantic hurricane that caused extensive wind and flood damage on the Florida peninsula and over the adjourning Southeastern United States in early to mid September 1903. The third tropical cyclone and third hurricane of the season, this storm was first observed near Mayaguana island in the Bahamas early on September 9. Moving northwestward, it became a hurricane the next day and passed near Nassau. The cyclone then turned to the west-northwest on September 11 and passed just north of the Bimini Islands. As it crossed the Bahamas, the cyclone produced hurricane-force winds that caused damage to crops and buildings, but no deaths were reported over the island chain.

1924 Cuba hurricane Category 5 Atlantic hurricane in 1924

The 1924 Cuba hurricane is the earliest officially classified Category 5 Atlantic hurricane on the Saffir–Simpson scale, and one of two hurricanes to make landfall on Cuba at Category 5 intensity, the other being Hurricane Irma in 2017 – both are also tied for the strongest Cuban landfall in terms of maximum sustained winds. The hurricane formed on October 14 in the western Caribbean, slowly organizing as it tracked northwestward. By October 16, the storm attained hurricane status to the east of the Yucatán Peninsula, and subsequently executed a small counterclockwise loop. On October 18, the hurricane began undergoing rapid deepening, and the on next day it, reached an estimated peak intensity of 165 mph (270 km/h). Shortly thereafter, it struck extreme western Cuba at peak intensity, becoming the strongest hurricane on record to hit the country. Later the hurricane weakened greatly, striking southwestern Florida with winds of 90 mph (150 km/h) in a sparsely populated region. While crossing the state it weakened to tropical storm status, and after accelerating east-northeastward, it was absorbed by a cold front on October 23, to the south of Bermuda.

1933 Texas tropical storm Atlantic tropical storm in 1933

The 1933 Texas tropical storm produced record rainfall in the south-central United States in July of the 1933 Atlantic hurricane season. It was the third storm of the season, developing on July 14 near the Lesser Antilles. While moving westward through the Caribbean Sea, the cyclone passed just south of Jamaica on July 16. The storm dropped heavy rainfall on the island that caused flooding and road washouts. On July 18, the storm struck Belize and later moved across the Yucatán Peninsula. Initially it was believed that the storm continued into Mexico and dissipated while another storm formed to its northeast, but it was discovered in 2012 that the storm followed one continuous track.

1933 Tampico hurricane Category 5 Atlantic hurricane in 1933

The 1933 Tampico hurricane was one of two storms in the 1933 Atlantic hurricane season to reach Category 5 intensity on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. It developed on September 16 near the Lesser Antilles, and slowly intensified while moving across the Caribbean Sea. Becoming a hurricane on September 19, its strengthening rate increased while passing south of Jamaica. Two days later, the hurricane reached peak winds, estimated at 160 mph (260 km/h). After weakening, it made landfall on the Yucatán Peninsula, destroying several houses. One person was killed offshore Progreso, Yucatán during the storm.


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