Coastal Impacts of Hurricane Hugo

by Donald K. Stauble, U.S. Army Engineer Waterways, Experiment Station, Vicksburg, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Sediments


During the early morning hours of 22 September 1989, Hurricane Hugo made landfall on the South Carolina Coast. Hugo was a Category 4 hurricane at time of landfall with estimated maximum sustained winds of 120 kts. The impact of the storm has been estimated as a 100 year return event. The eye made landfall in the Charleston area, with the most severe right front quadrant of the storm creating high waves and storm surge that impacted some 193 km of shoreline northward into North Carolina. Detailed pre- and post-storm aerial photography has been compared to quantify alongshore variability in storm induced change. Modification parameters included inlet adjacent shorelines, overwash location and extent, island breaching, and dune/shorelines, overwash location and extent, island photography and ground measurements has given us a unique opportunity to examine the sediment transport patterns and morphodynamics of a major extreme event. Hurricane Hugo's impact variability can provide valuable lessons on process/response of coastal sediments and morphologies.

Subject Headings: Hurricanes, typhoons, and cyclones | Sediment transport | Storms | Islands | Coastal processes | Storm surges | Shoreline protection | Aerial photography | South Carolina | United States | North Carolina

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