Hurricane Camille Essay

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Chapter 26: Hurricane Camille Hurricane Camille was a disastrous storm with catastrophic damage including the destruction of many towns and lives even after making landfall and weakening. As most tropical systems, Camille began as a tropical wave that moved off the coast of Africa. Camille began to strengthen as it moved across the Atlantic reaching hurricane strength as is approached Cuba. Once Camille entered the Gulf of Mexico, Air Force reconnaissance measured wind speeds of up to 200 mph and a central pressure around 901 mb. Evacuation was strongly recommended for areas along the Gulf from Louisiana to Florida, though some residents refused to evacuate the area. On August 17, 1969 Camille made landfall producing the highest storm surge ever recorded in the Unites States and had winds sustained around 190 mph. One such factor contributing to the Camille's freakish strength could have been the Loop Current in the Gulf of Mexico. The Loop Current is quite difficult in forecasting in that there is no set pattern or location to which the current runs. Within the Loop Current there is warm water that extends fairly deeper than the water surrounding it. Hurricanes usually churn up slightly cooler water allowing for some weakening of the storm; however a hurricane moving over the Loop Current churns up warmer water that extends deeper into the ocean. Camille's extraordinary strength could be blamed in part due to the assumption that it tracked directly up the axis of the Loop Current. After landfall, Camille dropped torrential rains on the southern states with anywhere from 2 to 11 inches of rain. Camille eventually strengthened somewhat as it moved more inland bringing major destruction to the state of Virginia with damage to property and life. The track of Camille took it northeast and eventually back into the Atlantic where is regained tropical storm
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