NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS SR-206 (Updated Through 2002)

ATLANTIC TROPICAL STORMS AND HURRICANES AFFECTING
THE UNITED STATES: 1899-2002
(continued)

Table 1. The Saffir/Simpson hurricane scale

Category
Number

Maximum
Sustained Winds
(mph)

Storm Surge
(feet above
normal)

1

74 to 95

4 to 5

2

96 to 100

6 to 8

3

101 to 130

9 to 12

4

131 to 155

13 to 18

5

greater than 155

greater than 18

Note: Information for this table was taken from the NOAA publication Tropical Cyclones of the North Atlantic Ocean, 1871-1998 (Neumann, et al. 1999).
 

Table 2. Hurricanes (direct hits) affecting the United States and individual coastal states, 1899-2002.

 

Number of Hurricanes:
Saffir/Simpson
Category Number

Landfall
Frequency
(storms per
year)

Return
Period
(years)

Coastline
Length
(st. mi.)

Distance
Between
Landfalls
(st. mi.)

Area

1

2

3

4

5

Total

Entire U.S. coastline

63

39

49

14

3

168

1.62

0.6

3700

22.0

Alabama (AL)

5

1

5

0

0

11 

0.11

9.4

53

4.8

Connecticut (CT)

2

3*

3*

0

0

0.08

13.0

97+

12.1

Delaware (DE)

0

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

28

-

Florida (FL)

19

17

17

6

2

60

0.57

1.7

1350

22.5

Georgia (GA)

1

4

0

0

0

5

0.05

20.8

100

20.0

Louisiana (LA)

10

5

8

3

1

27

0.26

3.9

397

14.7

Massachusetts (MA)

2

2*

2*

0

0

6

0.06

17.3

192

32.0

Maryland (MD)

0

1*

0

0

0

1*

0.01

104.0

31

31.0

Maine (ME)

5*

0

0

0

0

5*

0.05

20.8

228

45.6

Mississippi (MS)

1

2

5

0

1

9

0.09

11.6

44

4.9

North Carolina (NC)

11

6

11

1*

0

29

0.28

3.6

301

10.8

New Hampshire (NH)

1*

1*

0

0

0

2*

0.02

52.0

13

6.5

New Jersey (NJ)

1*

0

0

0

0

1*

0.01

104.0

130

130.0

New York (NY)

3

1*

5*

0

0

9

0.09

11.6

127

14.1

Rhode Island (RI)

0

2*

3*

0

0

5*

0.05

20.8

40

8.0

South Carolina (SC)

7

4

2

2

0

15

0.14

6.9

187

12.5

Texas (TX)

12

9

10

6

0

37

0.36

2.8

367

9.9

Virginia (VA)

2

1

1*

0

0

4

0.04

26.0

112

28.0


Notes:

Asterisks (*) indicate that all hurricanes in this category were moving in excess of 30 mph. The hurricane (direct hits) portion of this table is taken from the NOAA publication Tropical Cyclones of the North Atlantic Ocean, 1871-1998 (Neumann, et al. 1999). Additional data for the years 1999-2002 were obtained from the National Hurricane Center's web site using the updated Atlantic track file (Jarvinen, et al. 1984) through 2002.

Coastline lengths were obtained from NOAA/Department of Commerce by using The World Almanac and Book of Facts (Famighetti, 1996). The measurements were made with a unit measure of 30 minutes of latitude on charts with a scale of 1:1,200,000. The coastline of sounds and bays was included to a point where they narrow to the width of unit measure, and included the distance across such a point. The plus sign (+) indicates that this coastline was estimated by using the CD-ROM software package (DeLorme, 1997).

The distance between landfalls was obtained by dividing the area's coastline by the number of hurricanes to affect that area.


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