Gulf Coast Surveys Damage From Hurricane Katrina

<< Back to Page 1   Page 2 of 2

Hurricane Katrina's front-right quadrant contained the storm's strongest winds. They pushed water from the Gulf of Mexico into a storm surge of more than 20 feet (6 meters) at the point where Katrina made landfall in Mississippi. Extensive damage has been reported in Biloxi and Gulfport.

The hurricane also bulldozed a storm surge of about 10 feet (3 meters) into Alabama's Mobile Bay.

Steve Huffman, a spokesman for the Mobile County Emergency Management Agency in Alabama, said at least eight feet (2 meters) of water surged through parts of downtown Mobile, where Huffman rode out the hurricane at the agency's headquarters.

"It was howling pretty good," he said. "I stepped outside a few times to see what was happening.

The wind was blowing pretty good, and the trees were trying to turn themselves into pretzels out there. In the distance you could hear transformers popping and hear tree limbs breaking."

Despite the strength of the storm, no deaths or serious injuries have been reported to Mobile authorities, Huffman said.

Randy McKee, the meteorologist in charge of the National Weather Service's Mobile office, said Katrina's winds didn't diminish to less than 30 miles an hour (48 kilometers an hour) until around midnight Monday.

"It was a long-duration event," McKee said. "It was so big and had such a large wind field, it took a long time even after the eye passed the northwest Alabama coast. It was with us all day and into the night."

McKee said many streets in Mobile are blocked today by downed trees and power lines.

Hurricane Katrina is the latest storm to strike the hurricane-prone Gulf Coast since Hurricane Ivan made landfall in September 2004. Hurricane Dennis made landfall on the western Florida Panhandle last month.

Willie Drye is the author of Storm of the Century: The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, published by National Geographic.

Free E-Mail News Updates
Sign up for our Inside National Geographic newsletter. Every two weeks we'll send you our top stories and pictures (see sample).

<< Back to Page 1   Page 2 of 2


SOURCES AND RELATED WEB SITES

ADVERTISEMENT

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC'S PHOTO OF THE DAY

NEWS FEEDS     After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.   After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS

National Geographic Daily News To-Go

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.
Click here to get 12 months of National Geographic Magazine for $15.