About Flooding

  • When it comes to hurricanes, wind speed is not the whole story. Hurricanes produce storm surge, tornadoes, and often the most deadly threat of all – flooding
  • Over the past 30 years, flooding has been responsible for the most deaths from hurricanes

Wind Isn't Everything

Flooding is not directly related to wind strength of hurricanes:

  • Some of the greatest rainfall amounts occur from weaker storms that move slowly or stall
  • Flooding can be a major threat to communities hundreds of miles from the coast as intense rain falls from huge tropical air masses
  • 63% of the flooding deaths resulting from hurricanes over the past 30 years have occurred in inland counties

The Dangers of Flooding

  • Since 1970, freshwater floods have accounted for 59% of the deaths resulting from tropical storms and hurricanes
  • Sadly, that number rises to 78% among children
  • At least 23% of U.S. tropical cyclone deaths occur to people who drown in, or attempt to abandon, their cars
  • In 1999, Hurricane Floyd brought intense rains and record flooding to eastern United States and North Carolina
  • Of the 56 people who perished in that hurricane, 50 drowned in inland flooding, 35 in North Carolina

“In the last 30 years, inland flooding has been responsible for more than half the deaths associated with tropical cyclones in the United States.”

–Ed Rappaport, National Hurricane Center