Meteorological events that happened on September 14th:
A hurricane storm surge swept over the islands of the Georgia coast with a great loss of life, destruction of crops, and severe floods inland.
357 people died as a hurricane made landfall near Corpus Christi, TX. A 16 foot storm surge inundated the low-lying areas, destroying almost all of the wooden buildings. Port Aransas was almost totally demolished. Damage totaled $20.3 million dollars.
A tornado 170 to 230 feet wide was reported in Yokohama, Japan while at the same time floods and heavy rain affected Tokyo.
Residents of South Florida were confused over conflicting reports about a major hurricane that was pushing northwest through the Bahamas. The San Felipe Hurricane had already caused over 1,000 deaths in Puerto Rico. The confusion led to a lack of preparation that contributed to the storm's high death toll in Florida.
A violent tornado, estimated at F4 intensity with winds over 200 mph, tore across Rockford, IL. The tornado first touched down 8 miles south-southwest of Rockford, and moved across the southeast part of the city. Four factories were damaged or destroyed, including the Rockford Chair and Furniture Company. Eight workers were killed there when the 3-story building collapsed. About a mile downstream, three boys were killed in a garage. The tornado was on the ground for 26 miles, dissipating in Boone County near Capron. A total of 14 people were killed, with around 100 injuries reported.
A very destructive hurricane, known as the “Great Atlantic Hurricane” swept across Cape Hatteras, NC with a central pressure of 947 millibars or 27.97 inHg. A few days before, the pressure was as low as 909.3 millibars or 26.85 inHg with sustained winds near 160 mph. The storm moved north and side swiped New Jersey and Long Island, NY, and crossed southeastern Massachusetts. The hurricane killed more than 400 people, mainly at sea. At Cape Henry, VA, sustained winds of 134 mph with gusts to 150 mph occurred. The hurricane destroyed the Atlantic City, NJ boardwalk. A wind gust was measured to 100 mph at Atlantic City, NJ, New York City, NY had a gust to 97 mph. Philadelphia, PA received 1.49 inches of rain on the 12th, 2.80 inches, a daily record, on the 13th, and 1.17 inches on the 14th, for a total of 5.46 inches. New York City, NY received daily record rainfall amounts of 3.94 inches on the 13th and 3.82 inches on the 14th. Total damage was estimated at $122 million dollars.
Hurricane Ethel developed rapidly in the central Gulf of Mexico early on this date, intensified and moved northward with winds estimated as high as 130 mph near the center late on this date. Ethel went from a tropical storm to briefly a Category 5 within 18 hours. Ethel decreased in intensity rapidly before reaching the coast near the Alabama- Mississippi border on the 15th as a minimal hurricane. The right forward quadrant of this storm spawned several tornadoes, funnel clouds and waterspouts. Hurricane force winds were reported in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, including Venice which reported sustained winds of 90 mph and gusts of up to 105 mph. Damage caused by this storm, other than those associated with the tornadoes, were mostly agricultural. Quarantine Bay, LA reported a 7 foot storm surge. Rainfall totals ranged from 2 to 10 inches. Damage was estimated at $1 million dollars and no fatalities were reported. Despite attaining Category 5 intensity, Ethel was not retired.
A deep upper level trough dug in across the west with a ridge across the east. The temperature at Fremont, OR dipped to 2° to tie the state record. Other record lows included: Winnemucca, NV: 15°, Kalispell, MT: 16°, Burns, OR: 18°, Helena, MT: 18°, Missoula, MT: 20°, Havre, MT: 22°-Tied, Boise, ID: 23°, Reno, NV: 26°, Great Falls, MT: 27°, Billings, MT: 31°, Lewiston, ID: 32°, Medford, OR: 32°, Eugene, OR: 33°, Salem, OR: 35° and Sacramento, CA: 43°.
A strong heat ridge was in place across the west as record heat continued. Record highs included: Palm Springs, CA: 114°, Phoenix, AZ: 109°, Victorville, CA: 108°, Fresno, CA: 105°, Stockton, CA: 104°, Sacramento, CA: 103°, San Francisco (Airport), CA: 103°, Santa Ana, CA: 100°, Bishop, CA: 100°, Downtown Los Angeles, CA: 97°, Winslow, AZ: 95°, Palomar Mountain, CA: 94°, Los Angeles (LAX), CA: 90°, and Big Bear Lake, CA: 85°.
The remnants of Hurricane Frederic dropped over 3.15 inches of rain in southern parts of La Belle Provence in Southern Quebec.
Beginning the previous day, heavy early season blanketed parts of the northern Rockies. Totals included Red Lodge, MT: 36 inches, Mystic Lake, MT: 30 inches, Nye, MT: 15 inches, Sheridan, WY: 7 inches, Billings, MT: 6 inches and Joliet/Columbus, MT: 4 inches.
A lightning bolt struck a soccer field in West Goshen Township, PA. 26 people were injured and 4 hospitalized, including players, coaches, officials, and spectators. One of the hospitalized died 5 days later.
Thunderstorms developing along a cold front produced severe weather from Minnesota to Texas. Thunderstorms in Iowa produced baseball size hail at Laporte City, and 80 mph winds at Laurens. Hail caused more than $10 million dollars damage to crops in parts of Iowa. Thunderstorms in Missouri produced wind gusts to 75 mph at Missouri City and Kansas City. A thunderstorm in Texas deluged the town of Fairlie with 2 inches of rain in 2 hours.
Barrow AK received 5.1 inches of snow, a record for September.
Thunderstorms produced severe weather over the Texas panhandle during the evening hours. One thunderstorm spawned a strong F2 tornado in the southwest part of Amarillo, and deluged the area with 5 inches of rain. The heavy rain left roads under as much as 5 feet of water, and left Lawrence Lake one mile out of its banks.
Hurricane Gilbert made the first of its two landfalls in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico as a Category 5 storm with maximum sustained winds of 170 mph reported at Cozumel. When it emerged in the Bay of Campeche, the cyclone weakened to a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph.
Unseasonably cool weather prevailed across the south central U.S. Several cities reported record low temperatures for the date, including Raton, NM with a reading of 30°. Other daily record lows included: Cheyenne, WY: 30°-Tied, Goodland, KS: 34°, Norfolk, NE: 35°, Clayton, NM: 36°, Pueblo, CO: 36°-Tied, Amarillo, TX: 40°, Midland-Odessa, TX: 51° and San Angelo, TX: 53°.
The afternoon high of 59° at Topeka, KS marked their 3rd straight record cool maximum temperature.
Unseasonably warm weather continued in the Pacific Northwest. Seattle, WA reported a record 8 days in a row of 80° highs or above.
A record early season snowstorm came to and end over the western Tanana Valley in central Alaska. 16.7 inches of snow fell at Fairbanks which set a new record for the greatest September snowstorm on record. Denali National Park was buried under 37.6 inches over the four day period and Eielson Air Force Base checked in with 23.5 inches.
Along with the snow came record lows across parts of the state including: Barrow, AK: 13°, Delta Junction, AK: 23°, Nome, AK: 24°, Juneau, AK: 32°-Tied and Annette, AK: 38°.
Canadian high pressure behind a strong cold front brought record chill to parts of the central U.S. Some low temperatures included: Camp Crook, SD: 19°, Porcupine, SD: 19°, Rapid City, SD: 24°, Sheridan, WY: 24°, Colorado Springs, CO: 28°, Cheyenne, WY: 29°, Pierre, SD: 31°, Goodland, KS: 31°, Pueblo, CO: 31°, Denver, CO: 32°, Dodge City, KS: 38°, Kansas City, MO: 41°, Oklahoma City, OK: 47°-Tied, Wichita Falls, TX: 49° and Midland-Odessa, TX: 51°-Tied.
Hurricane Hortense made landfall in Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada packing winds in excess of 75 mph. Wind gusts of 100 mph toppled trees and knocked out electrical service to tens of thousands of residents. Rainfall totals up to 5.5 inches of rain was reported.
Large swells produced by Hurricane Linda slammed onto the beaches of Orange County, California. Five people were swept off a jetty at the Wedge in Newport Beach and were carried 300 yards out to sea before being rescued by a passing boat.
A powerful thunderstorm unleashed a destructive wind that wreaked havoc on a small section of Bullhead City, AZ. The fierce wind snapped 24 power poles and damaged approximately 80 houses and mobile homes. Roofs were blown off or damaged, a garage was blown away and numerous awnings were ripped off and hurled through the air. 22 of the homes were condemned.
The largest peacetime evacuation in United States history was underway as 2.6 million residents of Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas were fleeing in advance of monstrous Hurricane Floyd. By days end, the Category 4 hurricane was battering the northern Bahamas packing winds of 135 mph with a minimum central pressure of 934 millibars or 27.58 inHg.
Drought emergencies and restrictions were lifted in NJ, from Burlington to Ocean Counties and to the S, after increasing rain ended a growing season drought that caused 80 million dollars in agricultural damage. Two days later the unprecedented rains of tropical storm Floyd effectively ended the drought, as up to 14.5" of rain fell, or about 4 months worth of normal rainfall. The drought emergency was lifted across the rest of NJ on the 27th.
Tropical Storm Gabrielle dumped 6.39 inches of rain in 24 hours at Tampa, FL.
The remnants of Hurricane Ike and Tropical Storm Lowell from the Pacific tracked across the Midwest and Ohio Valley, producing numerous wind gusts of 50 to 75 mph, with the strongest winds along the Ohio River. Two to five inches of rain also occurred, and combined with the lingering runoff due to the remnants of Hurricane Gustav a few days earlier to produce widespread flooding. Some areas received up to 9 inches of rain between the two events, southwest of Peoria, IL and southeast of Springfield, IL.
Chicago, IL suffered its worst rains in 137 years as more than 6 inches fell. Authorities said 90 billion gallons of water fell on the city’s water district.
Moisture caused flooding into southern Michigan where 3 to 6 inches of rain was common.
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