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FloodingWhat are the major hazards of a hurricane? First is the storm surge. A storm, coupled with normal tides, can increase the water level by as much as 15 feet. Since most of the populated Atlantic and Gulf coastlines are 10 feet above sea level (not to mention New Orleans), major flooding can occur.
New Orleans was under water in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
High windsHurricanes are measured by their wind velocity, according to the Saffire-Simpson Hurricance Scale. A Category 1 Hurricane has winds of at least 75 mph, while a Category 5 Hurricane has winds of 156 mph and up.
Before it headed toward Louisiana, Katrina paid a wet, windy visit to Florida. One person trying to drive through the storm in Fort Lauderdale called it "easily the most harrowing yet exciting 10 minutes of my life."
One of the most deadly effects of a hurricane is inland flooding. More than half the deaths from hurricanes were attributed to floods. The intense rains from Hurricane Floyd in 1999 resulted in 50 drownings. Pictured is the aftermath of Hurricane Allison, which hit the Houston area in 2001.