1899 San Ciriaco hurricane, also known as the 1899 Puerto Rico Hurricane or The Great Bahamas Hurricane of 1899, was the longest-lived Atlantic hurricane on record, and the second-longest-lived tropical cyclone globally on record (in terms of tropical duration) after 1994's Hurricane John in the Pacific. The third tropical cyclone and first major hurricane of the season, this storm was first observed southwest of Cape Verde on August 3. It slowly strengthened while heading steadily west-northwestward across the Atlantic Ocean and reached hurricane status by late on August 5. During the following 48 hours, it deepened further, reaching Category 4 on the modern day Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale (SSHWS) before crossing the Leeward Islands on August 7. Later that day, the storm peaked winds of 150 mph (240 km/h). The storm weakened slightly before making landfall in Guayama, Puerto Rico with winds of 140 mph (220 km/h) on August 8. Several hours later, it emerged into the southwestern Atlantic as a Category 3 hurricane. The system paralleled the north coast of Dominican Republic and then crossed the Bahamas, striking several islands. Thereafter, it began heading northward on August 14, while centered east of Florida. Early on the following day, the storm re-curved northeastward and appeared to be heading out to sea. However, by August 17, it turned back to the northwest and made landfall near Hatteras, North Carolina early on the following day. No stronger hurricane has made landfall on the Outer Banks since the San Ciriaco hurricane.
The storm weakened after moving inland and fell to Category 1 intensity by 1200 UTC on August 18. Later that day, the storm re-emerged into the Atlantic. Now heading northeastward, it continued weakening, but maintained Category 1 intensity. By late on August 20, the storm curved eastward over the northwestern Atlantic. It also began losing tropical characteristics and transitioned into an extratropical cyclone at 0000 UTC on August 22, while located about 325 miles (525 km) south of Sable Island. However, after four days, the system regenerated into a tropical storm while located about 695 miles (1,120 km) west-southwest of Flores Island in the Azores on August 26. It moved slowly north-northwestward, until curving to the east on August 29. Between August 26 and September 1, the storm did not differentiate in intensity, but began re-strengthening while turning southeastward on September 2. Early on the following day, the storm again reached hurricane intensity. It curved northeastward and passed through the Azores on September 3, shortly before transitioning into an extratropical cyclone.
In Guadeloupe, the storm unroofed and flooded many houses. Communications were significantly disrupted in the interior portions of the island. Impact was severe in Montserrat, with nearly every building destroyed and 100 deaths reported. About 200 small houses were destroyed on Saint Kitts, with estates suffering considerable damage, while nearly all estates were destroyed on Saint Croix. Eleven deaths were reported on the island. In Puerto Rico, the system brought strong winds and heavy rainfall, which caused extensive flooding. Approximately 250,000 people were left without food and shelter. Additionally, telephone, telegraph, and electrical services were completely lost. Overall, damage totaled approximately $20 million, with over half were losses inflicted on crops, particularly coffee.
At the time, it was the costliest and worst tropical cyclone in Puerto Rico. It was estimated that the storm caused 3,369 fatalities on the island territory. In the Bahamas, strong winds and waves sank 50 small crafts, most of them at Andros. Severe damage was reported in Nassau, with over 100 buildings destroyed and many damaged, including the Government House. A few houses were also destroyed on Bimini. The death toll in the Bahamas was at least 125. In North Carolina, storm surge and rough sea destroyed fishing piers and bridges, as well as sank about 10 vessels. Hatteras Island was almost entirely inundated with 4 to 10 feet (1.2 to 3.0 m) of water, and many homes were damaged. There was also much destruction at Diamond City, on the Shackleford Banks near Cape Lookout. There were at least 20 deaths in the state of North Carolina. In the Azores, the storm also caused one fatality and significant damage on some islands.
|San Ciriaco Hurricane of 1899|
|Category 4 major hurricane (SSHWS/NWS)|
Surface Weather Analysis of Hurricane San Ciriaco on August 13, 1899.
|Formed||August 3, 1899|
|Dissipated||September 12, 1899|
|(Extratropical after September 4, 1899)|
|Highest winds||1-minute sustained: 150 mph (240 km/h) |
|Lowest pressure||930 mbar (hPa); 27.46 inHg|
|Damage||$20 million (1899 USD)|
|Areas affected||Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, Turks and Caicos Islands, Cuba, Bahamas, East Coast of the United States (Landfall in North Carolina), Atlantic Canada, Azores|
|Part of the 1899 Atlantic hurricane season|
A tropical storm of unknown origins developed about 480 miles (770 km) southwest of the southwestern-most islands of Cape Verde at 00:00 UTC on August 3. According to an article by the United States Hydrographic Office, the British steamship Grangense encountered the system later that day, while located about 1,800 miles (2,900 km) east-southeast of Guadeloupe. According to the ship's log, there was a "sudden change in the weather", falling barometric pressures, and increasingly rough seas. Further, the storm "showed all the symptoms of a genuine West Indian hurricane underdeveloped." The captain, who followed a route from Europe to Brazil for many years, noted that he never experienced "any weather of cyclonic character so far to the eastward before".
Thereafter, the storm strengthened and reached winds of 70 mph (110 km/h) early on August 4. Intensification halted until late on the following day, at which time the storm reached hurricane status. Around 18:00 UTC on August 6, it became a Category 2 hurricane. Early the next day, the system deepened to a Category 3. While approaching the Lesser Antilles, it continued to strengthen, reaching Category 4 status around midday on August 7. Shortly thereafter, the hurricane passed through the Lesser Antilles and made landfall on Guadeloupe. At 18:00 UTC on August 7, the system attained its peak intensity with a maximum sustained wind speed of 150 mph (240 km/h) and a minimum barometric pressure of 930 mbar (27 inHg), observed by a weather station on Montserrat.
The hurricane weakened slightly while moving west-northward across the Caribbean Sea and made landfall in Guayama, Puerto Rico late on August 8 with winds of 140 mph (220 km/h). August 8 was the namesday of Saint Cyriacus, hence the hurricane's nickname. Several weather stations across the island reported low barometric pressures, with a reading as low as 939 mbar (27.7 inHg) in Guayama. Wind shifts were also experienced across the island, primarily in the south and the west. The storm crossed Puerto Rico in approximately six hours and emerged into the Atlantic Ocean late on August 8, while weakening to a Category 3 hurricane, with winds decreasing to 120 mph (195 km/h). The hurricane would maintain this intensity for more than nine days. Continuing west-northward, the hurricane brushed the north coast of Dominican Republic on August 9. Thereafter, the system moved slowly northwestward through the Bahamas, striking Inagua on August 10 and Andros Island on August 12. According to telephone and telegraph reports from the Weather Bureau, the storm was predicted to make landfall in Florida.
However, the storm instead curved north-northwestward and struck Grand Bahama on August 13. The next day, officials at the Weather Bureau predicted that the hurricane would strike Charleston, South Carolina, at which time it would have weakened "into an ordinary blow".
Instead, the storm eventually turned northeastward and moved parallel to the coast of the Southeastern United States for a few days. By early on August 17, however, the hurricane re-curved northwestward. At 01:00 UTC on August 18, it made landfall near Hatteras, North Carolina, with winds of 120 mph (195 km/h). Five hours later, the storm weakened to a Category 2 hurricane. Around midday on August 18, it fell to Category 1 hurricane intensity while re-emerging into the Atlantic Ocean. Thereafter, the storm drifted slowly east-northeastward before accelerating to the northeast after 12:00 UTC on August 19. It moved parallel to Long Island and New England, until curving just north of due east late on the following day.
The system began losing tropical characteristics after interacting with a weather front and transitioned into an extratropical cyclone early on August 22, while situated about 325 miles (525 km) south of Sable Island, Nova Scotia. The extratropical system moved east-southeastward and then southeastward, while continuing to weaken. By August 24, it curved eastward and then northeastward the next day. Operationally, it was believed that the system remained extratropical. However, Partagas indicated that it regenerated into a tropical storm at 00:00 UTC on August 26, while located about 695 miles (1,120 km) southwest of Flores Island, Azores. Initially, the rejuvenated system drifted slowly north-northwestward, before turning northward on August 27. No change in intensity occurred for nearly a week. On August 28, it curved northeastward and then eastward, while continuing to drift.
By September 1, the storm began to accelerate and moved east-southeastward. It resumed intensification the next day after curving southeast, and was upgraded to a hurricane early on September 3, based on barometric pressure data. A few hours later, the hurricane attained a secondary peak intensity with a maximum sustained wind speed of 80 mph (130 km/h). Late on September 3, the storm passed through the Azores, shortly before transitioning into an extratropical cyclone. After becoming extratropical, the remnants moved rapidly northeastward and continued to weaken, before dissipating southwest of Ireland late on September 4. However, the Weather Bureau noted that gales prevailed offshore France until September 12, when the system merged with a low pressure area.
With just under 28 days as a tropical cyclone, this system became the longest-lasting Atlantic hurricane on record.
On August 7, after stations in the Lesser Antilles reported a change in wind from the northeast to the northwest, the United States Weather Bureau ordered hurricane signals at Roseau, Dominica, Basseterre, Saint Kitts, and San Juan, Puerto Rico; later, a hurricane signal was raised at Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Advisory messages were sent to other locations throughout the Caribbean, including Santo Domingo, Kingston, Jamaica, and Santiago de Cuba, Cuba. Information was also telegraphed to major seaports along the Gulf and East coasts of the United States. On August 9, hurricane signals were posted at Santiago de Cuba, while all vessels bound northward and eastward from Cuba were advised to remain in port.
While passing through the Leeward Islands, strong winds were reported on several islands. In Guadeloupe, the storm unroofed and flooded many houses and buildings, including the American Consulate in Pointe-à-Pitre. Communications were significantly disrupted in the interior portions of the island. Two schooners sunk and at least 23 flat boats were pushed ashore in the Îles des Saintes archipelago of Guadeloupe. Impact was severe in Montserrat, with nearly every building destroyed. The Courthouse and a school, both of which remained standing, became crowded with homeless women and children. One-hundred deaths and fourteen-hundred injuries were reported.
In Saint Kitts, 5-minute sustained winds were 72 mph (116 km/h), while 1-minute sustained winds were as high as 120 mph (190 km/h). About 200 small houses were destroyed on Saint Kitts, with estates suffering considerable damage. Despite the impact, no deaths occurred, which was attributed to ample warnings. On Nevis, the hurricane left "general destruction" and at least 21 fatalities. Nearly all estates were demolished on Saint Croix, while almost every large building was deroofed. Eleven deaths were reported on the island.
Taking place a mere 12 months after the American invasion of the Island, U.S. Army Major Albert L. Myer described it as "more disruptive to Puerto Rican society than was the American invasion." The San Ciriaco hurricane was described as the first major storm in Puerto Rico since the 1876 San Felipe hurricane. Approximately 250,000 people were left without food and shelter. Overall, damage totaled approximately $35.8 million, with over half were losses inflicted on crops, particularly coffee. At the time, it was the costliest and worst tropical cyclone in Puerto Rico. The number of fatalities ranged from 3,100 to 3,400, with the official estimate being 3,369. The San Ciriaco hurricane is the deadliest tropical cyclone in the history of Puerto Rico.
Strong winds were reported throughout the island, reaching 85 mph (137 km/h) at many locations and over 100 mph (160 km/h) in Humacao, Mayagüez, and Ponce. Within the municipality of Ponce, 500 people died, mostly from drowning. Streets were flooded, waterfront businesses were destroyed, and several government buildings were damaged. Telephone, telegraph, and electrical services were completely lost. Ponce was described as an image of "horrible desolation" by its municipal council. Impact was worst in Utuado, with damage exceeding $2.5 million. In Humacao, 23 inches (580 mm) of rain fell in only 24 hours.
In Dominican Republic, heavy rainfall caused the Ozama River to overflow its banks, sweeping away an iron bridge. A freshet was also reported along the Haina River in San Cristóbal Province, washing away many houses.
The storm brought catastrophic impact to the Bahamas and at least 334 deaths. Losses to boating vessels reached $50,000. On Inagua, three vessels were lost and a schooner was left stranded at Lantern Head, while other boats that were hauled up on the bay suffered severe damage. The public school house was demolished on Ragged Island, though dwellings escaped serious impact. Plantain and banana plantations were completely flattened at Deadman's Cay on Long Island. Three vessels were beached on Rum Cay, but only one was considerably damaged. About 10 bushels of salt were lost. Two churches and a number of private homes were damaged on San Salvador Island. A few ships and vessels were destroyed, damaged, or lost on Eleuthera, leaving a few people missing.
On San Salvador Island, two churches and many dwellings were destroyed.
Exuma was devastated by the storm. All boats and other forms of transportation on the island were destroyed, with several crews either completely lost or missing some few members. Several bodies washed ashore and were immediately buried. A total of 46 deaths were reported at sea, with some victims as young as 8-years old. At Gray's Settlement, several houses, outbuildings, and a church were destroyed. Of the buildings that remained standing, many lost their roof. At Barritarri and Rolleville, churches were deroofed and several small buildings suffered complete destruction. Throughout the island, 97 dwellings were destroyed and 131 others were damaged, which did not include the number of kitchens, barns, and homes demolished at Alexandria and Stuart's Manor. Overall, the storm left at least 64 fatalities on Exuma alone.
Within the capital city of Nassau, fences and boundary walls separating businesses and properties were felled. A fruit factory, a sponge warehouse, a dancing pavilion, and about 100 smaller buildings were destroyed. A few public buildings were damaged, including the prison and the Government House. Damage to homes in Nassau was light in comparison to the dwellings in the suburbs, where lower-class homes suffered extensive impact or were completely destroyed. A total of 44 multi-family residences were demolished. Many adobes in Adelaide were flattened, forcing 12 families to live in a church. Three people suffered serious injuries after a home near Gambier was destroyed. The entire community of Gambier was reportedly wiped out. Local agriculture also experienced significant impact, with two orchards alone losing many trees and thousands of fruits. All sisal plantations on the island were demolished.
Of the 50 small crafts capsized by strong winds and waves in the Bahamas, a majority of these were located at Andros Island. Several settlements along the northern portions of the island were devastated, with numerous homes flattened and all crops were destroyed, including coconuts, corn, grapefruit, oranges, peas, and potatoes. At Red Bays, two churches were destroyed and many houses were washed away. Several sponging vessels were beached, resulting in an "astronomical" number of casualties. Only seven homes remained standing at Nicholls Town. A church was demolished along the Staniard Creek. At Coakley Town, several houses were blown down, while a number of vessels sunk. Overall, at least 114 deaths occurred on land alone. Several schooners were lost near Andros Island, while at least 30 other schooners were driven ashore and severely damaged or demolished.
Offshore the United States between Florida and North Carolina, the Norwegian bark Drot encountered the hurricane. A large wave swept the captain and seven crew members overboard. The remaining men built a makeshift raft out of the ship's plank in order to survive. However, the raft split into two, with two men on one portion and six on the other. On the former raft, a person committed suicide by jumping into the raging sea, but the remaining man was eventually rescued by the German steamship Titania. Of the six men on the other raft, three of them intentionally jumped into the ocean and drowned. Because the remaining three men realized that they were facing starvation or death by dehydration, they drew locks to determine who would be cannibalized by the other two. The man who lost was killed and the two surviving people drank blood from his veins. One of the persons remaining then went insane and bit large chunks of flesh from the other man's face and chest. On August 31, two weeks after the ship sunk, the two survivors were finally rescued by the British steamer Woodruff.
The Weather Bureau office in Jupiter, Florida, recorded sustained winds of 52 mph (84 km/h) and a gusts up to 63 mph (101 km/h). Winds downed all telegraph lines in the area, which disrupted telegraphic communications for about 48 hours. Brief periods of heavy rainfall were also reported. At The Breakers hotel in Palm Beach, storm surge ripped off the upper portion of the ocean deck, which consisted of railings, a canopy, and a flagpole. Between Titusville and Miami, losses reached $5,000. Tides along the coast of South Carolina peaked at 2.8 ft (0.85 m), resulting in no coastal flooding. Well executed warnings were attributed to no fatalities in South Carolina.
Strong winds were observed in coastal North Carolina, with sustained winds up to 93 mph (150 km/h) and gusts as high as 140 mph (230 km/h). However, the anemometer then blew away. According to the Weather Bureau, "the entire island" of Hatteras was submerged in 4 to 10 ft (1.2 to 3.0 m) of water due to storm surge. A personal account by Weather Bureau observer S. L. Dosher noted that it was typical for 40 to 50 individuals in Hatteras to seek shelter in a home because of coastal flooding, only to be forced to venture to another dwelling due to rising water. In only four houses, less than 1 ft (0.30 m) of water was recorded. All fishing piers and equipment were destroyed, while every bridge was swept away. About 10 vessels, including a large steamship, were wrecked.
Dosher, sent a report to Washington, D.C. on Aug. 21, four days after the storm hit the Outer Banks. In his report Dosher wrote: "The howling wind, the rushing and roaring tide and the awful sea which swept over the beach and thundered like a thousand pieces of artillery made a picture which was at once appalling and terrible and the like of which Dante's Inferno could scarcely equal." He stated, "At about 8 p.m. on the 17th when the wind lulled and shifted to the east and the tide began to run off with great swiftness, causing a fall of several feet in less than a half hour, a prayer of thankfulness went up from every soul on the island, and strong men, who had held up a brave heart against the terrible strain of the past 12 hours, broke down and wept like children..."
Severe damage also occurred at Diamond City and Shackleford Banks, where nearly every house was swept away. A number of farm animals drowned. The tides unearthed caskets, damaging them and leaving bones scattered throughout the towns. After the storm, residents began abandoning the area and re-settled in other cities, most of them located elsewhere in the Outer Banks. On Ocracoke Island, the island was covered with 4 to 5 feet (1.2 to 1.5 metres) of water. A total of 33 homes were destroyed and nearly every other suffered damage. Additionally, two churches were demolished. Several cows, horses, and sheep drowned. Among the ships that wrecked was the barkentine Priscilla. Rasmus Midgett, a United States Life-Saving Service member, single-handedly rescued 10 people from the Priscilla. On October 18, Midgett was awarded the Lifesaving Medal by Secretary of the Treasury Lyman J. Gage. Heavy rains and strong winds as far inland as Raleigh resulted in "great damage" to crops. There were at least 20 fatalities in North Carolina.
Strong winds were also reported in Virginia. At Cape Henry, winds peaked at 68 mph (109 km/h) for five minutes. In Norfolk, five-minute sustained winds reached 42 miles per hour (68 km/h). The storm was quite severe along the James River, with low-lying areas of Norfolk inundated by wind-driven tides, while livestock drowned in the flood waters at Suffolk. A "heavy northeastern storm" began in Petersburg the night of August 17. In Southside Virginia Corn and tobacco suffered considerable damage as crops were leveled by strong winds.
Some wealthy citizens and local governments in Puerto Rico provided food and shelter in the immediate aftermath of the storm, but their resources were too limited to effectively handle the disaster. Following Military Governor George Whitefield Davis's initial assessment of damage, he requested that the federal government appeal to citizens for aid. In San Juan, Major John Van Hoff established a Board of Charities, which was staffed by military doctors and clergy. Davis requested that similar committees be developed and headed by three "people of respectability" in each town. At the time, the island was divided into 12 military districts. Davis ordered that commanding officers assess damage in each district and report the number of citizens without food and shelter. Hundreds submitted petitions for tax relief, including 369 in Lares alone. The destruction of infrastructure made it difficult to deliver aid, especially because of a 11 mi (18 km) section of railroad destroyed between Añasco and Mayagüez. Many roads and bridges were rebuilt in the following months. However, because the railroads were privately owned, the government hesitated to begin repairs. Various municipal governments proposed 25 million to 30 million pesos in bonds to fund restoration efforts.
On August 24, the USAT McClellan departed the United States Quartermaster's dock in Brooklyn after being filled with supplies by the Puerto Rican Relief Committee of the Merchant's Association including 12,600 vests for women, 4,800 women's wrappers, 4,200 undershirts for men, 600 pairs of trousers, and 215 children's garments. H. C. F. Koch & Co. also sent 265 articles of women and children's clothing. Additionally, the Windsor Company donated one case of calico, the Renfrew Machinery Company contributed one case of gingham, the Hines Underwear Company gave away knit underwear, and the National Biscuit Company (now known as Nabisco) sent 30 barrels of bread.
In the Bahamas, the House of Assembly held a special session to vote for a measure that authorized expenditure for relief throughout the country. Additionally, Colonial Secretary Joseph Chamberlain called on several vessels to distribute and render assistance to the Out Islands. The British Government enacted the Hurricane Warning Act, which ordered that hurricane signal flags be hoisted at Fort Charlotte and Fort Fincastle in the event of a hurricane. The new regulation also required these flags to be raised when the barometric pressure fell to a certain point. Additionally, the Imperial Lighthouse Service issued a set of signal flags to all lighthouses in the Bahamas.
There was so much Destruction in Diamond City, North Carolina that the approximately 500 residents of the settlement and island decided to move inland. The last of the residents had left by 1902, and even relocated houses to nearby places such as Harkers Island, Salter Path and Morehead City.
Hurricane San Ciriaco set many records on its path. Resulting in at least 3,369 deaths in Puerto Rico, the storm was the deadliest hurricane to hit the island and the strongest at the time, until the Hurricane San Felipe Segundo made landfall in 1928 as a Category 5 hurricane. It was also among the deadliest Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded.
Also, with an Accumulated cyclone energy of 73.57, it has the highest ACE of any Atlantic hurricane in history. In 2004, Hurricane Ivan became the second Atlantic hurricane to surpass an ACE value of 70, but did not surpass the San Ciriaco hurricane.
The San Ciriaco hurricane is also the longest-lasting Atlantic hurricane in recorded history, lasting for 27.75 days.
The hurricane was one of the reasons why some 5,000 Puerto Ricans migrated to Hawaii. Two historians, living in Hawaii, documented the history of Puerto Rican migration to Hawaii and stated the San Ciriaco hurricane was one of the main reasons why Puerto Ricans went to Hawaii.
"Nicolas G. Vegas wrote in his Narración Patriótica (Patriotic Narration):
De aquel país borincano
Tierras de tan lindas flores
De alli salimos, señores.
A este suelo hawaiiano. . . .
Nadie pensaba olvidar
Aquel amable rincón
Y por causa del ciclón
Nos tuvimos que embarcar
Y empezamos a navegar
Para distantes regiones
Dejamos a nuestra espalda
Y de aquella tierra sana
De allí salimos, señores.
From that Borinquen land
Lands with such beautiful flowers
From there we left, sirs,
For this Hawaiian land. . . .
Nobody thought he would forget
That friendly part of the world
And because of the cyclone
We had to set sail
And we began to navigate
For distant regions
We left behind us
And from that healthy land
From there we left, sirs."
The hurricane earned its name by striking Puerto Rico on August 8, the Roman Catholic feast day devoted to Saint Cyriacus (San Ciriaco in Spanish). This was a common practice prior to the introduction of standardized hurricane names – for example, the 1867 San Narciso hurricane, the 1928 San Felipe hurricane, and the 1932 San Ciprian hurricane were also named after the feast day on which they occurred.
The 1903 Jamaica hurricane devastated Martinique, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands in August 1903. The second tropical cyclone of the season, the storm was first observed well east of the Windward Islands on August 6. The system moved generally west-northwestward and strengthened into a hurricane on August 7. It struck Martinique early on August 9, shortly before reaching the Caribbean Sea. Later that day, the storm became a major hurricane. Early on August 11, it made landfall near Morant Point, Jamaica, with winds of 120 mph (195 km/h), with would be the hurricane's maximum sustained wind speed. Early on the following day, the storm brushed Grand Cayman at the same intensity. The system weakened before landfall near Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, early on August 13, with winds of 100 mph (155 km/h). The system emerging into the Gulf of Mexico early on August 14 after weakening while crossing the Yucatán Peninsula, but failed to re-strengthen. Around 00:00 UTC on August 16, the cyclone made landfall north of Tampico, Tamaulipas, with winds of 80 mph (130 km/h). The hurricane soon weakened to a tropical storm and dissipated over San Luis Potosí late on August 16.
In Martinique, hundreds of homes were deroofed in Fort-de-France, while about 5,000 people were left homeless in the villages of Fond, Fourniols, La Haye, Recluce, and Tivoli, all of which were established after the eruption of Mount Pelée in 1902. The hurricane also left extensive damage to crops and eight fatalities. In Jamaica, several communities were completely or nearly destroyed, including Manchioneal, Port Antonio, and Port Maria. Thousands of homes also suffered damage in the capital city of Kingston. Banana crops were devastated so severely that many growers were forced into bankruptcy. Numerous ships were wrecked, particularly on the north coast of the island. There were at least 65 deaths and about $10 million (1903 USD) in damage. In the Cayman Islands, more than 200 houses and seven of eight churches on Grand Cayman were destroyed or heavily damaged. Of the 23 ships in the harbor, only the Governor Blake survived. Most of the crews on board those ships were reported killed, but loss of life onshore was minimal. The storm also caused heavy damage on the Yucatán Peninsula. Many ships were wrecked and communications were cut off in several places. In the Tampico area, there was considerable damage to the port and many ships were sunk or driven ashore. Much of the land between Tampico and Cárdenas in San Luis Potosí was submerged due to flooding. In all, the storm is believed to have killed at least 149 people.1928 Okeechobee hurricane
The Okeechobee hurricane of 1928, also known as the San Felipe Segundo hurricane, was one of the deadliest hurricanes in the recorded history of the North Atlantic basin; it was the fourth tropical cyclone, third hurricane, and only major hurricane of that year's hurricane season. It developed off the west coast of Africa on September 6 as a tropical depression, but it strengthened into a tropical storm later that day, shortly before passing south of the Cape Verde islands. Further intensification was slow and halted late on September 7. About 48 hours later, the storm strengthened and became a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale. Still moving westward, the system reached Category 4 intensity before striking Guadeloupe on September 12, where it brought great destruction and resulted in 1,200 deaths. The islands of Martinique, Montserrat, and Nevis also reported damage and fatalities, but not nearly as severe as in Guadeloupe.
Around midday on September 13, the storm strengthened into a Category 5 hurricane and peaked with sustained winds of 160 mph (257 km/h). About six hours later, the system made landfall in Puerto Rico; it remains the only tropical cyclone on record to strike the island at Category 5 intensity, as of 2019. Very strong winds resulted in severe damage in Puerto Rico; 24,728 homes were destroyed and 192,444 were damaged throughout the island, leaving over 500,000 people homeless. Heavy rainfall also led to extreme damage to vegetation and agriculture. On Puerto Rico alone, there were 312 deaths and about $50 million USD ($730 million today) in damage. While crossing the island and emerging into the Atlantic, the storm weakened slightly, falling to Category 4 intensity. It began crossing through the Bahamas on September 16, where it resulted in 18 fatalities.
The storm made landfall near West Palm Beach, Florida early on September 17, with winds of 145 mph (233 km/h). In the city, more than 1,711 homes were destroyed; the effects were most severe around Lake Okeechobee. The storm surge caused water to pour out of the southern edge of the lake, flooding hundreds of square miles to depths as great as 20 feet (6.1 m). Numerous houses and buildings were swept away in the cities of Belle Glade, Canal Point, Chosen, Pahokee, and South Bay, Florida. At least 2,500 people drowned, while damage was estimated at $25 million. The system weakened significantly while crossing Florida, falling to Category 1 intensity late on September 17. It curved north-northeast and briefly emerged into the Atlantic on September 18, but soon made another landfall near Edisto Island, South Carolina with winds of 85 mph (137 km/h). Early on the following day, the system weakened to a tropical storm and became an extratropical cyclone over North Carolina hours later. Overall, the hurricane caused $100 million in damage and killed at least 4,112 people.1932 Bahamas hurricane
The 1932 Bahamas hurricane, also known as the Great Abaco hurricane of 1932, was a large and powerful Category 5 hurricane that struck the Bahamas at peak intensity. The fourth tropical storm and third hurricane in the 1932 Atlantic hurricane season, it was also one of two Category 5 hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean that year, the other being the 1932 Cuba hurricane. The 1932 Bahamas hurricane originated north of the Virgin Islands, became a strong hurricane, and passed over the northern Bahamas before recurving. The storm never made landfall on the continental United States, but its effects were felt in the northeast part of the country and in the Bahamas, especially on the Abaco Islands, where damage was very great. To date, it is one of four Category 5 Atlantic hurricanes to make landfall in the Bahamas at that intensity, the others having occurred in 1933, 1992, and 2019.1932 San Ciprian hurricane
The 1932 San Ciprian hurricane was a powerful Atlantic tropical cyclone that struck Puerto Rico during the 1932 Atlantic hurricane season. The ninth tropical cyclone, fourth hurricane, and third major hurricane of the 1932 season, the San Ciprian Hurricane formed on September 25 east of the Leeward Islands and moved due west, where it quickly gained hurricane strength a day later. After peaking as a Category 4 storm, the hurricane crossed the entire length of Puerto Rico at Category 4 strength. The hurricane later struck the Dominican Republic as a Category 1 storm. Weakened by its three landfalls, the storm continued to trek westward as a weak tropical storm before making its fourth and fifth landfalls in Belize and mainland Mexico. The storm then dissipated on October 3.The San Ciprian Hurricane took an unusual east to west path across Puerto Rico, producing damage across the entire length of the United States territory. The next storm to follow a similar path was Hurricane Georges in 1998. Overall damage in Puerto Rico was catastrophic as the storm left $30 million (1932 USD, equivalent to $0.5 billion in 2018) and 225–257 fatalities. The hurricane also caused moderate damage in the Virgin Islands.1985 Puerto Rico floods
The 1985 Puerto Rico floods produced the deadliest single landslide on record in North America, killing at least 130 people in the Mameyes neighborhood of barrio Portugués Urbano in Ponce. The floods were the result of a westward-moving tropical wave that emerged off the coast of Africa on September 29. The system moved into the Caribbean Sea on October 5 and produced torrential rainfall across Puerto Rico, peaking at 31.67 in (804 mm) in Toro Negro State Forest. Two stations broke their 24-hour rainfall records set in 1899. The rains caused severe flooding in the southern half of Puerto Rico, which isolated towns, washed out roads, and caused rivers to exceed their banks. In addition to the deadly landslide in Mameyes, the floods washed out a bridge in Santa Isabel that killed several people. The storm system caused about $125 million in damage and 180 deaths, which prompted a presidential disaster declaration. The tropical wave later spawned Tropical Storm Isabel.Agriculture in Puerto Rico
The industry of agriculture in Puerto Rico constitutes about US$808 million or about 0.8% of the island's gross domestic product (GDP). The infrastructure of "traditional" crops is affected, but that is where the widespread use of hydroponic crops is relevant; the main concern with them is actually cost, since indoor structures should be safe from nature. Experts from the University of Puerto Rico argued that these crops could cover approx. 30% of the local demand, particularly that of smaller vegetables such as tomatoes, lettuce, etc. and several kinds of tubers that are currently being imported, opening the door to eventual exportation. The existence of a thriving agricultural economy has been prevented due to a shift in priorities towards industrialization, bureaucratization, mismanagement of terrains, lack of alternative methods and a deficient workforce. Its geographical location within the Caribbean exacerbates these issues, making the scarce existing crops propense to the devastating effects of Atlantic hurricanes.Atlantic hurricane
An Atlantic hurricane or tropical storm is a tropical cyclone that forms in the Atlantic Ocean, usually between the months of June and November. A hurricane differs from a cyclone or typhoon only on the basis of location. A hurricane is a storm that occurs in the Atlantic Ocean and northeastern Pacific Ocean, a typhoon occurs in the northwestern Pacific Ocean, and a cyclone occurs in the south Pacific or Indian Ocean.Tropical cyclones can be categorized by intensity. Tropical storms have one-minute maximum sustained winds of at least 39 mph (34 knots, 17 m/s, 63 km/h), while hurricanes have one-minute maximum sustained winds exceeding 74 mph (64 knots, 33 m/s, 119 km/h). Most North Atlantic tropical storms and hurricanes form between June 1 and November 30. The United States National Hurricane Center monitors the basin and issues reports, watches, and warnings about tropical weather systems for the North Atlantic Basin as one of the Regional Specialized Meteorological Centers for tropical cyclones, as defined by the World Meteorological Organization.In recent times, tropical disturbances that reach tropical storm intensity are named from a predetermined list. Hurricanes that result in significant damage or casualties may have their names retired from the list at the request of the affected nations in order to prevent confusion should a subsequent storm be given the same name. On average, in the North Atlantic basin (from 1966 to 2009) 11.3 named storms occur each season, with an average of 6.2 becoming hurricanes and 2.3 becoming major hurricanes (Category 3 or greater). The climatological peak of activity is around September 10 each season.In March 2004, Catarina was the first hurricane-intensity tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Southern Atlantic Ocean. Since 2011, the Brazilian Navy Hydrographic Center has started to use the same scale of the North Atlantic Ocean for tropical cyclones in the South Atlantic Ocean and assign names to those which reach 35 kn (65 km/h; 40 mph).Beatriz, Caguas, Puerto Rico
Beatriz is a barrio in the municipality of Caguas, Puerto Rico. Its population in 2010 was 4,353.Calendar of saints
The calendar of saints is a traditional Christian method of organizing a liturgical year by associating each day with one or more saints and referring to the day as the feast day or feast of said saint. The word "feast" in this context does not mean "a large meal, typically a celebratory one", but instead "an annual religious celebration, a day dedicated to a particular saint".The system arose from the early Christian custom of commemorating each martyr annually on the date of their death, or birth into heaven, a date therefore referred to in Latin as the martyr's dies natalis ('day of birth'). In the Eastern Orthodox Church, a calendar of saints is called a Menologion. "Menologion" may also mean a set of icons on which saints are depicted in the order of the dates of their feasts, often made in two panels.Climate of Puerto Rico
The climate of Puerto Rico in the Köppen climate classification is predominately tropical rainforest. Temperatures throughout the year are warm to hot, averaging near 85 °F (29 °C) in lower elevations and 70 °F (21 °C) in the mountains. Easterly trade winds pass across the island year round while the rainy season stretches from April into November. The relatively cool trade winds are blocked by the mountains of the Cordillera Central which causes rain shadows and sharp variations in the temperature and wind speed over short distances. About a quarter of the average annual rainfall for Puerto Rico occurs during tropical cyclones, which are more frequent during La Niña years.Cyriacus
Cyriacus (fl. c. 303 AD), sometimes Anglicized as Cyriac, according to Christian tradition, is a Christian martyr who was killed in the persecution of Diocletian. He is one of twenty-seven saints, most of them martyrs, who bear this name, of whom only seven are honoured by a specific mention of their names in the Roman Martyrology.Effects of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico
Hurricane Maria in September 2017 devastated the entirety of Puerto Rico and caused a major humanitarian crisis. Originally a powerful Category 5 hurricane, Maria was the strongest storm to impact the island in nearly 90 years. Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico on September 20 at high-end Category 4 status, bringing a large storm surge, very heavy rains, and wind gusts well above 100 mph (160 km/h), flattening neighborhoods and crippling the island's power grid. An estimated 2,982 fatalities and US$90 billion in damage occurred as a result of the hurricane.Great Hurricane of 1780
The Great Hurricane of 1780, also known as Huracán San Calixto, the Great Hurricane of the Antilles, and the 1780 Disaster, is the deadliest Atlantic hurricane on record. Between 22,000 and 27,501 people died throughout the Lesser Antilles when the storm passed through them from October 10–16. Specifics on the hurricane's track and strength are unknown because the official Atlantic hurricane database goes back only to 1851.The hurricane struck Barbados likely as a Category 5 hurricane, with at least one estimate of wind speeds as high as 200 mph (320 km/h) (greater than any in recorded Atlantic basin history) before moving past Martinique, Saint Lucia, and Sint Eustatius, and causing thousands of deaths on those islands. Coming in the midst of the American Revolution, the storm caused heavy losses to the British fleet contesting for control of the area, largely weakening British control over the Atlantic. The hurricane later passed near Puerto Rico and over the eastern portion of Hispaniola, causing heavy damage near the coastlines. It ultimately turned to the northeast and was last observed on October 20 southeast of Atlantic Canada.
The death toll from the Great Hurricane alone exceeds that of many entire decades of Atlantic hurricanes. Estimates are marginally higher than for Hurricane Mitch, the second-deadliest Atlantic storm, for which figures are likely more accurate. The hurricane was part of the disastrous 1780 Atlantic hurricane season, with two other deadly storms occurring in October.History of Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Kitts and Nevis have one of the longest written histories in the Caribbean, both islands being among Spain's and England's first colonies in the archipelago. Despite being only two miles apart and quite diminutive in size, Saint Kitts and Nevis were widely recognized as being separate entities with distinct identities until they were forcibly united in the late 19th century.Hurricane Carrie
Hurricane Carrie was the strongest tropical cyclone of the 1957 Atlantic hurricane season. The third named storm and second hurricane of the year, Carrie formed from an easterly tropical wave off the western coast of Africa on September 2, a type of tropical cyclogenesis typical of Cape Verde-type hurricanes. Moving to the west, the storm gradually intensified, reaching hurricane strength on September 5. Carrie intensified further, before reaching peak intensity on September 8 as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph (220 km/h) in the open Atlantic Ocean. The hurricane curved northwards and fluctuated in intensity as it neared Bermuda on September 14. However, Carrie passed well north of the island and turned to the northeast towards Europe. Weakening as it reached higher latitudes, the storm transitioned into an extratropical cyclone on September 23, prior to affecting areas of the British Isles, and subsequently dissipated on September 28.
Due to its distance away from any major land masses, Carrie caused relatively minor damage along its path. On September 16, the hurricane passed well north of Bermuda, causing minimal damage despite its intensity at the time, though hurricane reconnaissance flights in the area were postponed due to damage sustained by one of the aircraft. As it was transitioning to an extratropical cyclone southwest of the Azores, the German ship Pamir encountered the storm and capsized on September 21, resulting in the deaths of 80 crew members on board. As an extratropical storm, Carrie brought strong storm surge and heavy rain to the British Isles, which claimed three lives. The hurricane's long duration and path in open water also helped it attain a number of Atlantic hurricane records.Hurricane Ginger
Hurricane Ginger was the second longest-lasting Atlantic hurricane on record. The eighth tropical cyclone and fifth hurricane of the 1971 Atlantic hurricane season, Ginger spent 27.25 days as a tropical cyclone, lasting from September 6 to October 3. Twenty of those days (September 11 – September 30), Ginger was classified as a hurricane. The storm formed northeast of the Bahamas, and for the first nine days of its duration tracked generally eastward or northeastward while gradually strengthening to peak winds of 110 mph (175 km/h). On September 14, Ginger slowed and turned to a general westward track, passing near Bermuda on September 23. There, the hurricane produced gusty winds and high waves, but no damage.
While over the western Atlantic Ocean, Ginger became the last target of Project Stormfury, which sought to weaken hurricanes by depositing silver iodide into tropical cyclone rainbands. Ginger ultimately struck North Carolina on September 30 as a minimal hurricane, lashing the coastline with gusty winds that caused power outages across the region. Heavy rainfall flooded towns and left severe crop damage, with 3 million bushels of corn and 1 million bushels of soybean lost. Damage in the state was estimated at $10 million (1971 US dollars, $61.9 million 2019 USD). Further north, moderate precipitation and winds spread through the Mid-Atlantic states, although no significant damage was reported outside North Carolina.
Ginger has the highest accumulated cyclone energy for a hurricane below major hurricane strength in the Atlantic basin, at 44.2.Hurricane Maria
Hurricane Maria was a deadly Category 5 hurricane that devastated Dominica, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico in September 2017. It is regarded as the worst natural disaster in recorded history to affect those islands and was also the deadliest Atlantic hurricane since Mitch in 1998. The tenth-most intense Atlantic hurricane on record and the most intense tropical cyclone worldwide in 2017, Maria was the thirteenth named storm, eighth consecutive hurricane, fourth major hurricane, second Category 5 hurricane, and deadliest storm of the hyperactive 2017 Atlantic hurricane season. At its peak, the hurricane caused catastrophic destruction and numerous fatalities across the northeastern Caribbean, compounding recovery efforts in the areas of the Leeward Islands already struck by Hurricane Irma. Total losses from the hurricane are estimated at upwards of $91.61 billion (2017 USD), mostly in Puerto Rico, ranking it as the third-costliest tropical cyclone on record.
Originating from a tropical wave, Maria became a tropical storm on September 16, east of the Lesser Antilles. Highly favorable environmental conditions allowed the storm to undergo explosive intensification as it approached the island arc. The hurricane reached Category 5 strength on September 18 just before making landfall on Dominica, becoming the first Category 5 hurricane on record to strike the island. After weakening slightly due to crossing Dominica, Maria achieved its peak intensity over the eastern Caribbean with maximum sustained winds of 175 mph (280 km/h) and a pressure of 908 mbar (hPa; 26.81 inHg). On September 20, an eyewall replacement cycle took place, weakening Maria to a high-end Category 4 hurricane by the time it struck Puerto Rico. Interaction with land further weakened the hurricane, though it regained some strength as it moved northeast of the Bahamas. Moving slowly to the north, Maria gradually degraded and weakened to a tropical storm on September 28. Embedded in the westerlies, Maria accelerated toward the east and later east-northeast over the open Atlantic, becoming extratropical on September 30 and dissipating by October 2.
Maria wrought catastrophic devastation to the entirety of Dominica, which suffered an island-wide communication blackout. Much of the housing stock and infrastructure were left beyond repair, while the island's lush vegetation was practically eradicated. The islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique endured widespread flooding, damaged roofs, and uprooted trees. Puerto Rico also suffered catastrophic damage and a major humanitarian crisis; most of the island's population suffered from flooding and a lack of resources, compounded by the slow relief process. The storm caused the worst electrical blackout in US history, and in June 2018, thousands of homes and businesses were still without power. Maria was the third consecutive major hurricane to threaten the Leeward Islands in two weeks, after Irma had made landfall in several of the islands two weeks prior and Hurricane Jose passed dangerously close shortly afterward, bringing tropical storm force winds to Barbuda.
On August 28, 2018 (almost a year after the hurricane), Puerto Rico revised its official tally of 64 killed in the hurricane up to 2,975, making the total death toll 3,059: an estimated 2,975 were killed in Puerto Rico, 65 in Dominica, 5 in the Dominican Republic, 4 in Guadeloupe, 4 in the contiguous United States, 3 in the United States Virgin Islands, and 3 in Haiti. Maria is the deadliest hurricane in Dominica since the 1834 Padre Ruíz hurricane and the deadliest in Puerto Rico since the 1899 San Ciriaco hurricane. The death toll in Puerto Rico was initially reported as 64 by Puerto Rican authorities but revised after several studies estimated between 1,400 and 5,740 deaths were attributable to the storm. The official estimate of 2,975 is based on a study commissioned by the governor of Puerto Rico, where researchers at George Washington University developed statistical models of excess mortality attributable to Maria, including both direct and indirect fatalities. Researchers attribute the discrepancy with the initial death count to "lack of awareness of appropriate death certification practices after a natural disaster" among physicians reporting deaths to vital statistic agencies.Hurricane Nadine
Hurricane Nadine was the fourth-longest-lived Atlantic hurricane on record. The fourteenth tropical cyclone and named storm of the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season, Nadine developed from a tropical wave west of Cape Verde on September 10. By the following day, it had strengthened into Tropical Storm Nadine. After initially tracking northwestward, Nadine turned northward, well away from any landmass. Early on September 15, Nadine reached hurricane status as it was curving eastward. Soon after, an increase in vertical wind shear weakened Nadine and by September 16 it was back to a tropical storm. On the following day, the storm began moving northeastward and threatened the Azores but late on September 19, Nadine veered east-southeastward before reaching the islands. Nonetheless, the storm produced tropical storm force winds on a few islands. On September 21, the storm curved south-southeastward while south of the Azores. Later that day, Nadine transitioned into a non-tropical low pressure area.
Due to favorable conditions, the remnants of Nadine regenerated into a tropical cyclone on September 24. After re-developing, the storm executed a cyclonic loop and meandered slowly across the eastern Atlantic. Eventually, Nadine turned south-southwestward, at which time it became nearly stationary. By September 28, the storm curved northwestward and re-strengthened into a hurricane. The tenacious cyclone intensified further and peaked with winds of 90 mph (140 km/h) on September 30. By the following day, however, Nadine weakened back to a 65 mph (105 km/h) tropical storm, as conditions became increasingly unfavorable. Strong wind shear and decreasing sea surface temperatures significantly weakened the storm. Nadine transitioned into an extratropical cyclone on October 3, and merged with an approaching cold front northeast of the Azores soon after. The remnants of Nadine passed through the Azores on October 4 and again brought relatively strong winds to the islands.List of Category 4 Atlantic hurricanes
Category 4 hurricanes are tropical cyclones that reach Category 4 intensity on the Saffir–Simpson Hurricane Scale. Category 4 hurricanes that later attained Category 5 strength are not included in this list. The Atlantic basin includes the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Category 4 is the second-highest hurricane classification category on the Saffir–Simpson Hurricane Scale, and storms that are of this intensity maintain maximum sustained winds of 113–136 knots (130–156 mph, 209–251 km/h). Based on the Atlantic hurricane database, 143 hurricanes have attained Category 4 hurricane status since 1851, the start of modern meteorological record keeping. Category 4 storms are considered extreme hurricanes. Hurricane Ike, which was a Category 4 storm, brought on a 24 ft storm surge, the third greatest storm surge ever recorded (after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Camille, respectively).