1928 Atlantic hurricane season

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1928 Atlantic hurricane season
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The 1928 Atlantic hurricane season was an ongoing event in the annual cycle of tropical cyclone formation. It officially began on June 1, 1928 and ended on November 30, 1928.

The 1928 season wasn’t very active, but was very eventful. Six tropical cyclones formed during the season. Four of those became hurricanes. Only one became a major hurricane. A Category 2 hurricane hit central Florida near Melbourne. Another hurricane hit southern Cuba, weakened to a tropical storm and grazed the southwest Florida coast. It made landfall near Apalachicola. A tropical storm hit Mexico in early September. However the most notable storm of the season was the Lake Okeechobee Hurricane. It began its life as a tropical disturbance off Cape Verde. It crossed to the Leeward Islands and started strengthening rapidly. It goes down in history as the first hurricane to have been recorded to reach Category 5 intensity in the Atlantic since 1851 (when the first records are available; other hurricanes could have reached Category 5 intensity undetected before this time). The entire breadth of the storm slammed into Puerto Rico with immense force. The destruction was nearly absolute; very little was left standing. Nearly a thousand people died on Puerto Rico alone. After devastating Puerto Rico it headed on a straight track for Florida. However, by this time it had slipped back down to a Category 4. The hurricane struck near Vero Beach. The dyke holding back Lake Okeechobee burst and a torrent of water was sent cascading across south Florida. Whole towns along the lake were flattened in a matter of hours. At least 2500 people died in Florida in what is the United States’ second deadliest hurricane and second deadliest natural disaster. Cemetery space quickly became scarce and bodies began being buried in mass graves. The storm that had caused so much destruction ended its days as an extratropical storm over western New York that petered out over Lake Erie.

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