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Hurricanes of the Gulf of Mexico presents a comprehensive history and analysis of the hurricanes that occurred in the Gulf of Mexico from the 1800s to the present, reporting each hurricane's point of origin, oceanic and atmospheric influences, track, size, intensity, point of landfall, storm surge, and impact on life and the environment. Additional information describes the unique features of the Gulf that influence the development of hurricanes, and the problems of predicting hurricane activity in the coming years. Hurricanes of the Gulf of Mexico is illustrated with 52 photographs, 44 maps, and 15 charts, plus tables and graphs.
Observed near-surface air and sea-surface temperatures for three hurricanes -- Hilda (1964), Betsy (1965) and Camille (1969) -- were studied. Composites were made for each of the storms. These composites were oriented to true north, had diameters of 400 n mi and covered the period in the Gulf of Mexico prior to the time the hurricanes reached maximum intensity. The mean air temperature was less than the mean sea-surface temperature, and this difference varied from 1.2C in the outer region of the composites to 2.9C near the center. In the 24-hour period prior to maximum hurricane intensity, the difference was 4.3C near the center. The data also indicated that the distribution of air-sea temperature difference within the hurricanes varied by quadrant with the southeast quadrant containing the largest over-all average difference (2.4C) and the southwest quadrant averaging 1.1C.
Hurricane Elena, following an erratic and difficult-to-forecast course along an unusually large section of the Gulf Coast, posed special problems from New Orleans, Louisiana, to Sarasota, Florida, well before it came ashore on September 2, 1985. Considerable wind damage occurred in this area to structures that were ostensibly designed to resist such extreme wind conditions. Because similar design conditions and building control procedures exist along other U.S. hurricane-prone coasts, the conclusions drawn in this detailed book catalog the structural damage caused by the hurricane and emergency response actions, establish the wind conditions of the storm, review in-depth the building control process used in the area, and conduct necessary structural and wind tunnel tests relevant to a large number of communities along the coastal areas.
respect to both climate and society.

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