Damaged homes are shown from the 1991 Halloween Storm, also called the Perfect Storm, that killed 13 people. (Source: NOAA)
(RNN) – No one should allow Hurricane Sandy's temporary downgrade to lull them to sleep, especially those that live on the East Coast.
This "Frankenstorm" – as has become its popular nickname – has all the makings of a nor'easter, a weather phenomenon that can include part hurricane, part snowstorm and is completely destructive.
Nor'easters usually begin in the Atlantic Ocean off the East Coast of the U.S. and move toward Canada. They form when winds from the north move downward and meet warm air that travels up from the Gulf of Mexico.
The Atlantic Coast from fall until spring provides the perfect timeframe and location for these powerful super storms because the changes in temperature and constant air movement cause several such meetings.
Those meetings of the hot and cold air fronts produce the rotation that creates more severe weather, however nor'easters don't always classify as hurricanes.
The most destructive nor'easter in recent memory was the 1993 Superstorm that affected the entire eastern half of the United States, Canada and Cuba. The storm produced snow, wind speeds near 100 mph and more than 50 tornadoes. Estimates of damage in terms of property and lives reached as high as $6 million and more than 300 people.
The "Perfect Storm" of 1991 killed 13 people – including an entire ship crew of six and a National Guard member – and inspired a book and subsequent movie. This storm lasted an unusually long five days and eroded 1,000 miles of coastline by sending 15-foot waves ashore.
The Great Blizzard of 1978 devastated New England and killed more than 10 people, many of whom were trapped in their houses or stranded in their cars on roadways barricaded by snow.
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Thursday, September 12 2013 11:26 PM EDT2013-09-13 03:26:03 GMT
(RNN) - After a slow start, the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season is ramping up. Tropical depression 10, poised to become Ingrid if it develops into a full-fledged tropical storm, developed in the Gulf ofMore >
After a slow start, the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season is ramping up.More >
Tuesday, July 30 2013 2:25 PM EDT2013-07-30 18:25:47 GMT
The National Hurricane Center in Miami is tracking a tropical depression that has formed in the East Pacific. Forecasters say the system should strengthen to a Tropical Storm by early Thursday morning.More >
The worst of what is now Tropical Depression Flossie has now passed through most of the state, bringing thunderstorms dangerously high surf but sparing most islands from serious storm related damage.
Friday, June 7 2013 5:09 AM EDT2013-06-07 09:09:19 GMT
The Grand Strand is under a Tropical Storm Warning as Andrea approaches from the southwest. More >
The Grand Strand remains under a Tropical Storm Warning as Andrea moves northeastward along the eastern seaboard. With the 5 a.m. update, the National Hurricane Center said Andrea is about 50 miles southwest of Charleston.More >
Thursday, June 6 2013 7:51 AM EDT2013-06-06 11:51:47 GMT
(RNN) – Less than a week into the official hurricane season, the first storm of the year has formed in the Gulf. Tropical Storm Andrea has sustained winds of 40 mph and is sitting 320 miles SSW of Apalachicola,More >
Less than a week into the official hurricane season, the first storm of the year has formed in the Gulf.More >
Monday, April 15 2013 9:06 PM EDT2013-04-16 01:06:27 GMT
A new audit released Monday by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor says the state could be on the hook for hundreds of millions in disaster relief payback. The money was supposed to help property ownersMore >
A new audit released Monday by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor says the state could be on the hook for hundreds of millions in disaster relief payback. The money was supposed to help property owners recover from Hurricanes Rita and Katrina.More >
Monday, April 8 2013 7:09 PM EDT2013-04-08 23:09:50 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Hurricane Season officially starts June 1st, but emergency management and disaster relief organizations are already hard at work getting ready for the season, saying the riskMore >
Hurricane Season officially starts June 1st, but emergency management and disaster relief organizations are already hard at work getting ready for the season, saying the risk of a big storm is always there.More >
(RNN) - As Hurricane Sandy continues its roll towards the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, people in some of the nation's most populated cities have either evacuated hunkered down to ride out what has becomeMore >
Sandy, no longer a hurricane, has made landfall along the southern coast of New Jersey. More >
Sunday, October 28 2012 7:34 PM EDT2012-10-28 23:34:19 GMT
You may have the luxury of seeing a hurricane coming, but that doesn't mean you can wait until it arrives to prepare. Days before a hurricane arrives you should plan for the major weather event to keepMore >
Days before a hurricane arrives you should plan for the major weather event to keep you and your family safe.More >
Thursday, August 30 2012 1:35 AM EDT2012-08-30 05:35:36 GMT
(RNN) - After crashing into southern Louisiana Tuesday evening, Hurricane Isaac erratically continues its course across several southern states, bringing torrential rain and power outages to areas in its path. AlthoughMore >
Hurricane Isaac continues to dump double-digits of rain over some parts of Louisiana and Mississippi. More >