Hurricanes and tropical systems from 1800-1999
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September 15-21, 1938- September 15, a tropical cyclone became a hurricane and traveled north and hit the new england states on the 21. By 2:30 p.m., the eye of the hurricane was over Long Island. The unusual speed of the hurricane made it impossible to issue hurricane warnings. Forecasters had no idea the storm would be traveling at 70 miles per hour. Remember this is 1938 so back then it was hard to tell how strong a hurricane was. The storm reached Long Island and southern New England with great ferocity and with a high storm surge and incredible wind gusts. The tide completely enveloped Fire Island on the south side of Long Island. Over 150 homes were destroyed at Westhampton. There was massive destruction to coastal areas on Long Island and the coastal areas of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Wind gusts of over 100 miles per hour were measured at New London, Connecticut, and gusts of over 180 miles per hour were recorded at the Blue Hill Observatory south of Boston, Massachusetts. Providence, Rhode Island experienced terrible flooding as the tide, even inside the city, rose to almost 14 feet. This hurricane will never be forgotten by the people who lived through it.