WX History: August 18th

1925: During the late morning hours a severe hailstorm struck southeastern Iowa completely destroying crops along a path six to ten miles wide and 75 miles long. The hail also injured and killed poultry and livestock, and caused a total of 2.5 million dollars damage. The hailstorm flattened fields of corn to such an extent that many had to leave their farms in search of other work.

1931: The Yangtze River in China crests during a horrible flood that kills 3.7 million people directly and indirectly over the next several months. This flood was perhaps the worst natural disaster of the 20th century.

Source: History Channel.

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WX History: August 17th

1899: Hurricane San Ciriaco set many records on its path. Killing nearly 3,500 people in Puerto Rico, it was the deadliest hurricane to hit the island and the strongest at the time, until 30 years later when the island was affected by the Hurricane San Felipe Segundo, a Category 5 hurricane, in 1928. San Ciriaco is also the longest lasting Atlantic hurricane in recorded history, lasting for 28 days. On August 17, the hurricane turned back to the northwest and made landfall near Hatteras, North Carolina on the following day. San Ciriaco remains the strongest hurricane to make landfall on the Outer Banks since 1899.

1946: An estimated F4 tornado killed 11 people and injured 100 others in the Mankato, Minnesota area around 6:52 PM. The deaths and most of the injuries occurred in the complete destruction of the 26 cabins at the Green Gables tourist camp, 3 miles southwest of Mankato. A 27-ton road grader was reportedly hurled about 100 feet. Another tornado an hour later destroys downtown Wells, Minnesota.

 

Aug 17, 1946 Mankato Tornado Damage
Tornado destruction of Green Gables Cabin Camp showing the office. The image is courtesy of the Blue Earth County Historical Society.

 

Source: Blue Earth County Historical Society.

1969: The music festival, known as Woodstock, should have ended on this day. Jimi Hendrix, the last act to perform, was delayed due to rain on Sunday evening. Jimi Hendrix took the stage at 8:30 am Monday morning.

Source: History Channel.

WX History: August 16th

1777: The Battle of Bennington, delayed a day by rain, was fought. The rain-delayed British reinforcements and allowed the Vermont Militia to arrive in time, enabling the Americans to win a victory by defeating two enemy forces, one at a time.

1992: One of the most destructive United States hurricanes of record started modestly as a tropical wave that emerged from the west coast of Africa on August 14. The wave spawned a tropical depression on August 16, which became Tropical Storm Andrew the next day.

 

Aug 16, 1992 Hurricane Andrew
Hurricane Andrew on August 23 at 1231 UTC. This image was produced from data from NOAA-12, provided by NOAA.

 

Source: National Hurricane Center.

 

WX History: August 13th

1831: The Great Barbados Hurricane was an intense Category 4 hurricane that left cataclysmic damage across the Caribbean and Louisiana in 1831. From August 11 through the 13, Bermudians were amazed to see the sun with a decidedly blue appearance, giving off an eerie blue light when it shone into rooms and other enclosed places. Ships at sea as far west as Cape Hatteras reported that “their white sails appeared a light blue colour.” A month later it was learned that the astounding blue sunlight had coincided with a terrible hurricane that caused 1,477 people to lose their lives. It was assumed that the hurricane was intensive enough to cause an unusual disturbance in the higher atmospheric strata, and refraction, diffraction or absorption of light rays, to cause the blue reflection. Because the sun appeared bluish-green, Nat Turner took this as the final signal and began a slave rebellion a week later on August 21.

Source: NOAA Hurricane Research Division

1987: A succession of thunderstorms produced rainfall that was unprecedented in 116 years of precipitation records at Chicago, Illinois during an 18 hour period from the evening of the 13th to the early afternoon of the 14th. The resulting flash flood was the worst ever to strike the Chicago metropolitan area, causing three deaths and water damage that amounted to 221 million dollars. O’Hare International Airport received an event total of 9.35 inches of rain in 18 hours, shattering the previous 24-hour record of 6.24 inches. For about 24 hours, the airport was only accessible from the air as all roads were blocked by high water, including the Kennedy Expressway.

http://abc7chicago.com/video/embed/?pid=251209

Source: Eyewitness to History: Record rainfall, floods in 1987 – ABC7 Chicago.

1991:  Stockton, California received 0.05 inch of rainfall on this day. Since 1949, this is the only measured rainfall in Stockton on August 13th.

2003: A string of days in Paris France with temperatures from the 4th to the 12th above 95°F ends when the day’s high drops to 90°F. During the long, hot summer which began 25 July and has registered several days above 100°F, an estimated 14,800 have died from heat-related causes, the French government admits.

Source: NASA’s Earth Observatory.

2014: An official, New York State 24 hour precipitation record was set at Islip, NY on August 12-13 when 13.57″ of rain fell.

 Source: NWS Office in New York.

WX History: August 8th

1874: Swarms of Rocky Mountain locust invaded Denver, Colorado. Millions were seen cruising through the air. The insects were apparently picked up by a thunderstorm gust front and carried into the city. The grasshoppers ravaged crops in surrounding counties for the last month.

Aug 8, 1874 The Year of the Locust
A Kansas farm family fights a losing battle with the relentless “hoppers” in a cartoon by 19th-century illustrator Hanry Worrall. From the Kansas State Historical Society.

Source: 1874: The Year of the Locust. Historynet.com.

2007: A tornado bounces across Staten Island and Brooklyn, New York, ripping off roofs and damaging dozens of buildings. The EF-2 twister hop-scotched through Brooklyn’s Bay Ridge and Sunset Park neighborhoods around 6:30 am.

Aug 8, 2007 Brooklyn NY Tornado Info

Source: Storm Data for August 2007.

WX History: August 6th

1918

1959: Hurricane Dot crossed Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands producing sustained winds of 105 mph with gusts to 125 mph. Over 6 inches of rain fell with over 9 inches on the big island of Hawaii. The sugar cane crop on Kauai sustained $2.7 million in damages.

August 6, 1959 Hurricane Dot

1993: Virginia experienced its worst tornado outbreak ever as 18 tornadoes ripped through the state in 5 hours. The most devastating tornado caused severe damage in the historic part of Petersburg. The storm then moved onto Pocahontas Island and into Colonial Heights. There, the storm ripped apart a WalMart store, killing three people and injuring nearly 200. The F4 twister was the first known violent tornado in Virginia history. It killed a total of 4 people and injured 246 along its 12-mile path. Total damages were near $50 million.

Source: History Looks Back at Tri-Cities Tornado of 1993 by WTVR.

2015

 

WX History: August 4th

1609: Sir Thomas Gates, future governor of Virginia, was on his way to England from Jamestown. On Saint James Day, while between Cuba and the Bahamas, a “most terrible and vehement storm” raged for 44 hours. One of the small vessels in the fleet sank to the bottom of the Florida Straits. Four of the remaining vessels reached Virginia soon after the storm…followed a few days later by three other ships. The flagship, known as Sea Adventure, disappeared and was presumed lost. A small bit of fortune befell the ship and her crew when they made landfall on Bermuda. Although the vessel was damaged on a surrounding coral reef, all survived and spent ten months on the unsettled isle. The Spaniards, though shipwrecked on the island many times, had failed to colonize there. The British claimed the island and quickly settled the subtropical isle. In May 1610, they set forth for Jamestown, this time arriving at their destination. This near catastrophe likely provided the inspiration and background for William Shakespeare’s play, The Tempest.

Source(s): BBC.CO.UK and Virginia Hurricane History from the Weather Prediction Center.

1882: A vivid aurora was visible from Oregon to Maine, down the east coast as far as Mayport, FL, and inland as far as Wellington, KS. Observers at Louisville, KY noted “merry dancers” across the sky, and observers at Saint Vincent, MN noted it was probably the most brilliant ever seen at that location.

Aug 4, 1882 Auroras

Source: Monthly Weather Review.

2008: Severe storms moved across northern Illinois and Indiana with tornadoes and stiff winds reported. With tornado sirens blaring, the game at Wrigley Field between Cubs and Astros was stopped as fans were told to evacuate to the lower concourse. Passengers at O’Hare International Airport were evacuated to lower levels of buildings as well. An estimated 350 flights were canceled.

Source: NWS Office in Chicago, Illinois.

2009: The strongest tornado to hit Quebec since the same date in 1994 ripped through Mont-Laurier. The F2 tornado tore through the small western Quebec town severely damaging about 40 homes. Two men were taken to the hospital with minor injuries.

Source: Tornado slams Quebec’s Mont-Laurier – CBCNEWS

2017

WX History: August 2nd

1896

 

1985: An aircraft accident occurred at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport at approximately 6:00 p.m. Neither the crew nor air traffic control was aware that below what appeared to be a rather insignificant thunderstorm existed a strong downdraft of cold, dense air. Upon final approach, the pilot of the Lockheed L-1011 ran into the microburst and was unable to lift out of it. He lost control of the aircraft, hitting several objects on the ground before finally crashing into a water tank near the runway. 133 people were killed, and 31 were injured.

Source: WFAA.com

1995

 

2006: Johannesburg, South Africa residents see snow flurries for the first time in at least eight years.

August 2, 2006 South Africa Snow Source: NASA’s Earth Observatory.

2006

2015

The same storms that wrecked havoc in Michigan, also impacted southern Ontario. The intense storms caused nearly 50,000 customers to lose power.

Aug 2, 2015 Toronto Storm
The picture from CBCNEWS and was taken by Mike Talmage.

Source: CBCNEWS.

 

2017

WX History: June 27th

1915: The temperature at Fort Yukon, Alaska soared to 100 degrees to establish a state record.

June 27, 1915 Fort Yukon Heat

Source: Brian B’s Climate Blog

1995: The Madison County Flood on June 27, 1995, was the worst flash floods Virginia had seen since the remnants of Camille dropped up to 30 inches of rain one night in Nelson County in August 1969. The Nelson County flood ranked as one of the nation’s worst flash floods of the century and resulted in the deaths of 117 people. The Madison County flood of 1995 killed one person.

June 27, 1995 Virgina Flash Flood

 

2011: Polar temperatures and unusual snowfall chill several cities in Brazil’s southern states. Four cities in Santa Catarina state are blanketed in snow. The city of Urubici reported a temperature of 23.9 degrees Fahrenheit with a wind chill of 16.6 degrees below zero. In Florianopolis, the capital of Santa Catarina and a renowned sea resort, thermometers registered 21.2 degrees.

Source: MercoPress.

WX History: June 16th

1806: Great American total solar eclipse occurred from Baja California to Massachusetts with nearly five-minute in duration.

Source: GreatAmericanEclipse.com

1896: A tsunami ravages the coast of Japan killing between 22,000 and 27,000 people.

Source: History.com

2014

2017