Hurricane Danny in 1997

Hurricane Danny Flooding
Hurricane Danny Flooding in 1997

Hurricane Danny was the only Atlantic hurricane in 1997 to make landfall. The first landfall was early on July 18th, 1997, near Buras, Louisiana. It was a small category 1 hurricane with the hurricane force winds very near the eye. It moved slowly northeastward to make a second landfall near Fort Morgan before sunrise on July 19th. Dauphin Island felt the hurricane force wind and torrential rain. It then drifted eastward, stalled, and then drifted twoard southeastern Alabama on the 20th.

Rain was extreme. Mobile’s airport picked up over a foot of rain, Fairhope got 24″; Malbis got 33″; and Dauphin Island Sea Lab measured 37″ over the course of several days. See the statistics here from the Mobile Office of the National Weather Service, and the Coastal Weather Research Center, and the National Hurricane Center.

Fish River and Fowl River set record heights, forcing evacuations.

Storm tide right on the coast was as much as 5 to 6 feet but with a strong north wind over northern Mobile Bay, the Alabama State Docks had a record low tide of 2 feet, while people were amazed to see water blown southward, out of the northern Bay.

From the National Climatic Data Center summary of Danny and the impacts for all of the US that it impacted….

Damage to power lines and poles was widespread, cutting power to more than 20,000 homes and business along the path of the hurricane. Roof damage from the wind was observed on some coastalhouses. Winds also caused the collapse of a four story condominium under construction and several tornadoes were also associated with the storm.Danny was directly responsible for four deaths. A man was killed when he was caught in the Gulf of Mexico on his sailboat near Fort Morgan, Alabama. A woman was killed by a tornado in Lexington County, South Carolina. In Charlotte, North Carolina, a girl drowned when floodwater swept her into a creek, and a woman drowned while trapped in her car in floodwater. Five other deaths were indirectly associated with Danny. According to the American Insurance Services Group, insured losses from Danny were about $60 million. The National Hurricane Center estimates overall damages around $100 million.

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